Tony Denison previews the return of MAJOR CRIMES
MAJOR CRIMES returns to TNT tonight (9/8c) to finish out the second season of the show with all new episodes through December. To preview the return, we spent time speaking with series star Tony Denison, the man behind Andy Flynn, about what’s coming for Flynn, Provenza, the rest of the team, and what we can expect from Andy and Sharon!
Jumping in – talking about where we left the season, and where we’ll be when we come back.
When we come back, what we’ve involved in specifically is dealing with the Stroh situation, and the situation that Rusty might be in which is where we sort of left off at the end of the Summer episode. There’s still a continuation of that. And then there are a couple of other things that might surprise some people, which of course I’m not at liberty to share [laughs]. People who enjoy what happened in the show, conversations between certain people. If you’re a fan of the show, you won’t be disappointed; if you weren’t, you will become one.
I feel like that’s how it’s been with the show – when it was THE CLOSER, and now that it’s MAJOR CRIMES and slightly different, I’ve never heard someone say “I watched it and didn’t like it” – it was always “I haven’t watched yet.”
Yes, I think what’s happening, according to James Duff, somehow, we’ve set some kind of new record for television. We were once called something else, THE CLOSER, and then we lost four of the leading characters, four left, we changed the name of the show. All the same characters stayed, and not only did we survive, but we went up demographically! So that alone is supposed to be history making, and the other thing is, god-willing, we are able to make it to another 100 episodes, that would be the first time that a show got 100 episodes, and then another 100 episodes under a different name.
I think you’re well on your way, having gotten picked up for a season 3 already, and knowing that there is more to come! That has to be exciting to play this character that we’ve loved for so long.
A lot of times, you’ve been lucky on a show for 10 years, and I may have the opportunity to play this character for 14 years or 15 years, which would be great and that to mean would be record breaking, as well.
Talking about the show – I love the Rusty storyline, and how we don’t know who is sending the letters. It’s obviously nothing something we can talk about without spoiling, but were you surprised how it turned out, reading scripts?
Yeah, I mean, I had the feeling it was going in that direction. Since the very beginning, when I would get the scripts, there were times I would read the script and say, well who the heck is going to be the murderer? [laughs] And then you get tt the end and you go “oh man! I never would have guessed that person” and then it makes sense, and it’s like, okay, awesome. That’s the way it’s always been to me on the show. Not only am I on the show, I’m a fan. Now, especially more than ever, I enjoy watching the show, the Captain Raydor and Rusty, and the guys on the show, because we all have a lot more to do than previously. All of us doing everything together, with the exception of GW and I who are very fortunate to have worked together and being called Pro-Flynn-za, so not only have we been fortunate to have that happen, but I was fortunate to be a part of that duo. GW has become a dear friend, and we were when we were doing THE CLOSER, but now even more. I love working with him, and I love working with everybody. But I love all the stuff that they allow us to do on the show, and the predicaments that we get into [laughs]. There will be a lot of that this year.
I love that, too – the show can get dark, go to some dark places, but you have Flynn and Provenza who lighten the mood, no matter how they’re involved.
[laughs] Clearly there’s a different edge to MAJOR CRIMES than there was to THE CLOSER. While we still had some gruesome crimes scenes on THE CLOSER, I don’t know, MAJOR CRIMES goes in a little bit in a different direction. And you’re right about that – there’s the opportunity for my character to have a silly walk. When you look at that, you think to yourself, and you say “oh I’m looking at a comedy script” but in the context of the episode, and the show, you realize that cops as they’re pursuing cases, doing what they’re doing, they have their stuff that they’re dealing with. The guys are frustrated because his kid is doing time, or bills to pay, or he’s got something with my heart, or something wrong with my leg, eating only protein bars for lunch, people do it all the time. They’re still trying to solve the crime, but day in and day out, they are going through some stuff.
You mention with the show that it’s always a surprise who is the murderer – I think that’s a testament to how guest stars are handled. Other shows, the big name is the big killer, and that’s rarely the case with MAJOR CRIMES.
I can’t say what’s going to happen in terms of the plot points, but it definitely not disappoint in terms of what’s been going on in terms of storyline. I’m just as a surprised sometimes as who winds up being. There’s like one red herring, or first suspect, and sometimes it’s two red herrings. Even as a reader of the episode, you think I would get used to Duff’s, James Duff’s trickery, and I don’t! He’s that clever. You read and you think it’s gotta be so and so, but oh man, it’s surprising, and oh that makes sense now! It makes it fun to do it. There’s a reason why law enforcement agencies around the country like our show.
I was looking online and seeing what people are asking you on Twitter, and so much of it these days is “Are Sharon and Andy going to be a thing?” Is that something we’ll continue to see explored?
Let me put it this way: people that are enthusiastic in that direction will have an interesting ride! There will be certain breadcrumbs along the way!
It sounds like Fritz (Jon Tenney) will be back for a bit as the Stroh case ramps up – is it Stroh that brings him back, or something else?
Stroh is always sort of something – with Graham on the show, you know, Rusty, Stroh is always in the background. In real life, the FBI or the cops, they don’t always get their man. It doesn’t mean they stop going after them. The FBI has the 10 most wanted list, you don’t get off the 10 most wanted list unless you’re dead. They still have that list. They can’t get him always. It’s not because the bad guy is more clever, there are circumstances. A lot of times, you’ll think, oh, and somebody gets away. I have a good friend named Jim Clemente, he has a show on the air now, called KILLER PROFILES on Lifetime – he just keeps going, eventually [the bad guy] gets caught anyway, it’s just like, somehow a light turns red, and you don’t make that intersection, and they’re gone. The train door closes, and the train pulls away from the station. Those things that they put dramatically in movies, happen in real life. It’s like life is about seconds and inches, and drama highlights those seconds and inches.
What else have you been working on besides MAJOR CRIMES?
I don’t remember doing anything on hiatus this year. I did an episode last year of CASTLE which was fun. I’ve done a couple of projects working as a producer. Some more reality-based; some scripted dramas. Trying my best! I don’t have anything sold just yet, but we’re getting closer and closer. Eventually, one will sell.
Well, I can’t wait to see what comes for the next 7 years of MAJOR CRIMES and where Andy Flynn can end up next!
From your mouth to God’s ears [laughs]. I know that the Pro-Flynn-za fans won’t be disappointed this year, and I understand, they’ll be delighted still.
MAJOR CRIMES airs Monday nights on TNT at 9/8c. Tony can be found on Twitter – @RealTonyDenison.