With the end of Mad Men in sight, Wetpaint Entertainment caught up with creator Matthew Weiner at the Creative Arts Emmys in Los Angeles on Sept. 15 to hear his thoughts on bringing the critically-acclaimed series to a close.
Wetpaint Entertainment: What we can we expect for the seventh and final season of Mad Men?
Matthew Weiner: I can’t tell you anything yet! We just opened the writer’s room; it is the last season of the show. I like to tell a new story every year. There will be a new story.
Will Jessica Pare be back? Can you tell us that?
No, I can’t tell you anything! I can’t tell you anything! Can I be honest with you? How many things are there in life that you don’t know what’s going to happen besides your own life? I think it’s one of the unique things about the show — and it’s not just a commercial thing at this point — it’s a relationship with the audience, and I really try to keep it under wraps so that people can watch it. You know it’s hard to be blown away when you know everything that’s going to happen. It’s super-counterintuitive because people really think that everybody wants to know! When we get closer, I will [talk] more about it thematically.
Who is your dream guest star if you could pick anyone?
Jack Nicholson. I would like Jack Nicholson to come by and be on the show. He could play the president of anything.
Have you approached him about it?
I have not; I’ve heard that he watches the show, which is a gift.
Do you pinch yourself sometimes when you think, "Jack Nicholson watches my show"?
[Laughs] I’ve heard it. He hasn’t told me. I’ve never met him, but now ask anyone on this carpet. […] Who would you like on your show? And that’s what they’re going to say. Jack Nicholson.
How are the cast members doing going into this final season? Are they mentally prepared to see it end?
It’s going to be interesting. It’s going to be interesting. We’re all going to be very emotional. I can tell you one thing: The first day when they come back and we start shooting — all clichés aside, it is a family. We are an underdog team together. No one can believe it happened. "Can you believe this happened?" is 90% of what is said when we go back to work. Yeah, and it has been the whole time, and Jon [Hamm] is such a great leader that, if he stays strong, I’ll be able to stay strong. I don’t know. You know what? Working helps distract you from that, and then we’re going to lift our heads up and be like, Oh my god.
You’re going to be so exhausted, you won’t have time to be sad!
I don’t know! I’ve never lived through something like this. On The Sopranos, I had already started Mad Men. I missed the very ending, and it wasn’t my show, so I don’t know.
Mad Men is like your baby. How are you going to say goodbye to your baby?
I don’t know. It’s going to be really hard. Oh my god. It’s going to be really, really hard. Hopefully it will be great, our seventh season. I hope you’re not disappointed; I just want to keep it entertaining.
The first half of Mad Men's seventh season will air in Spring 2014.