Exclusive: Producer Jeff Pinkner Teases 'Fringe' Season 4Today 5:10 PM PDT , by Joseph McCabe
With the fourth season of Fringe still months away, we are eagerly awaiting word on what is going to happen. Peter - and all memory of him - no longer exists. The two universes have to work together to save themselves. Brad Dourif was brought in for the season finale - but only on screen for 56 seconds. Where will all this lead come fall? I snagged Fringe producer Jeff Pinkner at the 2011 Saturn Awards last night in the hopes of dragging some answers out of him.
How do you bring back a character no one has any recollection of?
The question, I think, is, "Do we bring him back? What are the consequences?" Peter made this heroic choice. He recognized that, in the future, if things continue the way things are going, the love of his life, Olivia, would die. Understanding the consequences, he decided to bring these two universes together in order to save her. As a consequence, he doesn't exist anymore! So really, the question is, "What does their life look like in his absence?"
The idea of multiple universes is really tantalizing. Could we see even more new universes this season?
I think - as we have said - there is so much story, and this is where our characters live. I do think we will be presenting a new version [of our universe]. One of the things that is awesome about Fringe is that every season, we take the same show, the same story, the same characters, and look at them from a different point of view. This season, we will certainly be doing that.
Might we see the Observers take a more active role this season?
For sure. We love the Observers. It's hard to answer without giving too much away, but for sure.
Brad Dourif's character only appeared on screen for a minute in the season finale before he was "killed" off. With an actor of his caliber, on a show like Fringe, will we see much more of his character next season?
I don't want to reveal anything, and we haven't talked to him, and his story existed in the year 2026, and our story is going to pretty much return to 2011. But. In the Fringe universe, things have a way of coming back around.
So if we do se him again, it probably would not be in the season's first episode.
Was it a little frightening when the show was renewed? You had a pretty good ending there, that could have worked well as a series finale.
We had a perfect ending, but it would have been understandably frustrating if that had been the series finale. Certainly one of the themes of our three main characters - Walter, Peter, and Olivia - is that they are sort of a family. They are all fringe human beings themselves, who have found a familial bond. And with Peter and Olivia, a romantic bond. It would have been slightly frustrating if that had been the series finale. We have a different series finale in mind.
Did you notice or learn anything from last season that you want to incorporate in the upcoming season?
What we learned right away, and really strongly, was how intelligent, engaged, and supportive our fans are. They really embolden us to take risks, to tell stories in another universe for entire episodes, with only some of our regular characters. To tell animated episodes. The unbelievable response we have gotten from fans has really allowed us to engage our crazy.
So a Fringe musical could come some day?
Oh for sure.
(Move over Rocky Horror Picture Show!)