The loss of a cast member is always hard, but when Dallas lost iconic actor Larry Hagman and had to put his character J.R. Ewing to rest, it proved to be the ultimate challenge for the writers and actors who had worked with the legend for so long.
Wetpaint Entertainment caught up with one of the show’s sexiest stars, Jesse Metcalfe, at the BCBGMAXAZRIA Spring 2014 Runway Show at New York Fashion Week where he talked about the painful loss and what’s to come in Season 3.
Wetpaint Entertainment: Last season must have been tough after losing an integral member of the cast. What will Season 3 of Dallas look like?
Jesse Metcalfe: I wish I had a clue. We haven’t [started filming]. We leave the third week of September and start filming October 2. Season 3 starts airing in February 2014. I can tell you that I love what they’ve written for my character so far. The cool thing about acting is you get to learn all these different skill sets. I come on the South Fork Ranch, and I have to learn how to ride a horse. Then, [in] Season 2, I got to learn how to ride a stock car. My character had this methane-powered Nascar storyline. So I don’t know what they have in store for me for Season 3, but I’m sure it’s going to be exciting and cool.
What’s been the biggest challenge for you throughout your acting career?
The biggest challenge for everyone was getting over the loss of Larry Hagman. I know the writing team had to completely rewrite the second half of the second season. I thought they did a tremendous job. And with that came a lot of very emotional scenes that were challenging from an acting standpoint, but I think it really came off well, and we were all really proud of those later episodes.
Of the characters you’ve played, which one do you relate to the most?
Probably this character. He’s incredibly ambitious. His driving force in life is probably to prove himself and succeed. The underside of that is that he has a lot of insecurity about being abandoned by the only mother he’s ever known and not being a blood Ewing. For everyone who’s incredibly ambitious, I think a lot of that is fueled by insecurity. So I get to dig deep into this character and expose some of my own fears and insecurities and my own past traumas. That’s really what acting is all about, and when you find the right character, it can be really cathartic.
Have your love scenes ever felt awkward?
It’s always a little awkward. It definitely helps to have a nice rapport with the person that you’re working with, a friendship. To be able to laugh about the awkward situation you find yourselves in. Sometimes it takes a little time to get to that point. Certainly there’s a lot of love scenes on Dallas, but coming into Season 3, we’re all pretty comfortable with each other and we try to have fun with it.
Dallas returns for Season 3 will return to TNT in February 2014. Will you be watching?