TV veteran Larry Hagman (I DREAM OF JEANNIE, DALLAS, among others) is bringing his horrible character Frank back to DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES this weekend in an episode that finds Lynette trying to keep him out of their family photo.  I had the pleasure of talking with Mr. Hagman about why he signed on to play this dastardly role, his passion for solar energy, and a little peek into why he’s heading back to DALLAS with a TNT pilot that continues to gather steam (Julie Gonzalo and Jesse Metcalfe just signed on with Jordana Brewster and Josh Henderson already on board to play new Ewing blood; Linda Gray and Patrick Duffy have also signed on).  Read on for a quick chat with one of the best in the biz!

We love this abrasive and obnoxious character of Frank on DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES.  Why was this a role you wanted to play?
Because my granddaughters told me to.

Excellent – that’s a perfect reason!
I have 5 granddaughters, from 26 to 14, and they’re all gorgeous and beautiful and they all look at this show, and so when they heard that I was approached to play a part on it, they said “oh gosh, you gotta do it Grandpa, you gotta do it!”

Tell me about what’s happening on this week’s episode.
Oh I can’t do that!  They told me, don’t talk about the show this week.  I said, well, gosh you’re giving me quite a problem there!

Lynette wants to get the family together for a family picture, but keeping Frank out of it.  Is there more to his story than being this incorrigible man?
No, my dear.  This guy is a real bastard.

That’s kind of fun to play, isn’ it?
Yeah, I love it!  I’ve been doing it for quite a time now!

Are we going to see more episodes with you coming back to the show?
I can’t talk about that either!  They stonewall.  They just stonewall me [laughs].  It’s like, why am I doing it?  I don’t know, just do it! [laughs]

With a cast like this, they’ve been established for a while now.  You, yourself, know about casts being together a length of time.  Was it a welcoming set to be on?
Oh yeah.  Oh absolutely.  You know, I know what it’s like to come on as a “day player” because of DALLAS.  I was a kingpin on that, and I know how nervous people get and so forth.  I didn’t get nervous, I knew I would be welcomed, and I was.  Everybody was so kind to me.

Why should we tune in this week to DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES?
Because it’s interesting!  And people are caught up in it!

I want to switch gears and talk about the Bob Krueger Public Service Award that you’ll be receiving this week.  I’m interested to hear more about that, congratulations on receiving that this year.
He’s an old friend of mine. I knew him when he was appointed Senator for Texas and I helped campaign for him.  We lost of course to Mrs Hutchison; she’s retired now. Anyhow!  He’s asked me to come down there.  I think it was because of my interest in Solar Electric Life Fund in Haiti.  I was kind of instrumental in bringing solar power to Paul Farmer’s clinics in Haiti.  He has 10 clinics there, that they’re running on Diesel.  I work with Solar World over in Germany, but they have manufacturing in the United States, and I got them to supply solar power for 10 of the clinics over in Haiti after the earthquake.

How did you get involved in SELF and Solar World?
I solarized my own home up in Ojai, and I have 100%.  I’m on the grid, but I get $10,000 back ever year, back from Anderson, because I make more solar energy than I produce.  Also, I’ve been interested in solar power for a long time, and finally implemented it on my own home, and that got the conversation going with Solar World and Solar Electric Life Fund.  Solar Electric Life Fund has been around for about 20 years, and I’ve been a board member for about 10 years.  They supply electricity for many countries: Rwanda, Nepal, many places, South Africa.  I believe in solar power.  I believe it’s our only answer.  Wind power is all very well, and it does a tremendous job, and we need that too, but it demands the maintenance.  There’s a lot of moving parts in there.  Solar panels just sit there and absorb electricity.

Let’s talk about returning to DALLAS!  So many conversations in the pop culture world have their roots in DALLAS.  The show has had such an impact on the world.  Why is now a good time to bring it back to into the mix; why will this generation love “new” DALLAS?
Greed, I suppose.  Yeah [laughs]. It’s a time tested formula and hopefully it will regenerate itself.

It will be nice to have the old gang back together.  It’s always fun to have a reunion movie or to see you gathering somewhere together.
That’s one of the main reasons I’m doing it.  So I can work with Patrick [Duffy] and Linda Gray again!