Right after True Blood exited stage left, the entire male cast of Entourage, sans Scott Caan and Rex Lee, came on stage at the Television Critics Association (TCA) to discuss the series’ last season on HBO. Journalists make for a tough crowd and with the exception of the applause Harry Belafonte earned after his panel, the men of Entourage didn’t get the loud burst of applause that I’m assuming they’re used to. The panel began with Doug Ellin taking a stab at making the room of journalists laugh: “I feel like we were just arrested.” And with that, the journalists started asking questions.
One journalist wanted to know about the challenges of ending a series like this, and more specifically, how was he going to end the series finale? Doug Ellin, the series creator, hoped that the audience was left thinking “We loved hanging out with these guys and we’ll miss them…You know what? I really had a good run with these guys.”
And how does the star of the series feel about the end? “We’re all choked up,” Adrian Grenier said. He goes on, “Truthfully, we’ve been together for eight years. We’ve spent…countless hours…creating something that we are all very, very proud of.” Jerry Ferrara, better known as Turtle added on to Grenier’s sentiments: “It’s very, very bittersweet for me….we’ve all made some lifelong friendships and that is probably the greatest thing that I got out of the whole thing.”
What about the fans who think the actors are actually their characters? Kevin Dillon discussed how people in the street “…think I’m Johnny ‘Drama.’ I live with Vince, and I cook for Vince.” Jeremy Piven went as far as to say, “I have had actors that have told me they fired their agent because they didn’t think they were enough like Ari.”
Speaking of Ari, what’s going on with him and Mrs. Ari? Jeremy Piven comments, “This character that I’ve been playing for eight years has ben such a reactive character and takes up the oxygen in the room. And then to humanize him like the way he’s going to be shown in this last season is just a gift that Doug gave me.” He goes on to give props to his maker, Doug Ellin and says that’s it’s been a gratifying, amazing ride.
It had to come up at some point. One reporter asked Doug Ellin about how women are represented on the show and the perception of misogyny. After a brief pause, Ellin said, “I like it…it’s a guys’ show, and it’s a young man’s show.” Kevin Connolly, who plays E added, “I also think we have some of the strongest female characters on television as well.” I’m not sure if Connolly is watching the same show I am or if he mixed up the word strongest with hottest. Either way, I disagree.
After I asked the gentlemen what they’d be doing after Entourage ends, Mark Wahlberg made a point to say that he would make an Entourage movie even if he had to finance it himself. “I was looking at that clip on the big screen, and it looks like a movie to me…I think people have always complained that the episodes are too short, and they want to go on a journey with these guys.”
Then, as the panel was wrapping up, a reporter that just couldn’t help himself asked about Jerry Ferrara’s (Turtle) glaring weight loss and how he did it. Ferrara joked, “I’ve been wearing a fat suit all these years.” But in all seriousness, Ferrara said that for a year and a half he’s tried an entirely different lifestyle in order to become more healthy.
Now, one last thing for all those who want to know how it might end.
The last scene of the series will take place at Van Nuys Airport. I don’t know if there’s coming or going of where they’re coming or going to, but Ellin did say that he was heavily influenced by the movie Diner and loved that although nothing major happened, the audience just loved spending time with that group of people.
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(Image courtesy of HBO)