CBS shocked the TV world Sunday with its announcement during Super Bowl 50 that “The Good Wife” will adjourn its seven-season run May 8. Executive producers and co-creators Robert and Michelle King knew about the announcement, but not much earlier than fans got the news.
“We only heard about the Super Bowl possibility in the last week,” Robert King said Monday during a conference call with reporters.
After the 13-episode first season in 2009, the Kings decided the story of political wife and attorney Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies) could support seven seasons and they “built toward that,” Robert King said.
The Kings had announced previously that they would leave the series at the end of this season. At the January meeting of the TV Critics Association, CBS president Glenn Geller said it was too early in the year to determine if the network would continue the show without the Kings.
The Kings were OK with the idea that CBS might keep the show going without them, they said Monday, but were happy CBS honored their original plan for seven seasons.
“We felt very fortunate and flattered that we were being allowed to end the show the way we wanted it to end,” Michelle King said.
The Emmy-winning series, which airs Sunday nights on CBS, has nine episodes left. The writers room has at least four episodes left to write, the producers said, and the new end date will only slightly change their plans.
“The story won’t change from what we were intending but it allows us to be a little more definitive,” Michelle King said. “It will be written in pen instead of pencil.”
The producers are working to bring back some popular characters from the past, including Gary Cole’s Kurt McVeigh. But there are two characters you won’t be seeing: Archie Panjabi’s Kalinda Sharma and Josh Charles’ Will Gardner.
“Alas, Will Gardner’s dead,” Michelle King said. “So that’s sort of problematic right there.”