Considering what a hard time Lee Thompson Young’s fans are having in the wake of the 29-year-old actor’s death, we are not surprised to hear that we’re not alone. TNT showrunners confirmed today that production on Rizzoli & Isles has shut down while cast and crew process this sudden and tragic loss.
Lee was discovered in his apartment on Monday by his landlord after he failed to show up on set. It is believed that the actor, who plays Detective Barry Frost on the cable drama, may have taken his own life as early as Saturday, August 17. His death was ruled a suicide, by way of a self-inflicted bullet wound, though no note was left giving insight into why the young, up-and-coming and much beloved actor had decided to end his own life.
According to Deadline, producers are trying to figure out how to cope with Lee’s death both emotionally and plot-wise, since they will need to figure out how to write his character off the show in a meaningful way.
While they were originally trying to decide whether to resume production tomorrow, they have confirmed that the set will ‘stay dark tomorrow as the producers continue to evaluate the situation.”
After Lee’s death was announced, showrunner Janet Tamaro tweeted "We are all without the words to truly express our collective grief and profound sadness at the loss of such a sweet, bright light." Followed by a second tweet, saying "We are broken-hearted. #RIPLeeThompsonYoung.”
A formal statement followed, reiterating the producers’ grief over Lee’s untimely death. “It is with great sadness that I announce that Lee Thompson Young tragically took his own life this morning”, said Young’s long-time manager Jonathan Baruch. “Lee was more than just a brilliant young actor, he was a wonderful and gentle soul who will be truly missed. We ask that you please respect the privacy of his family and friends as this very difficult time.”
We will update the story as it develops.