After much media discussion, Caplan surrounded himself cannot appear in its six-episode third season, due to scheduling issues, the show managed to keep the final twist—and her brief appearance—a secret. As a tag at the end of the season finale, viewers got to see Casey, who landed a role on a hit TV series that makes her miserable, during her chance meeting with Henry after his decision to break up with Evie (Jennifer Garner). to end. .
This was a much-anticipated moment for fans who loved Henry and Casey’s chemistry in the first two seasons before the series was initially about a catering team. signed off in June 2010. Co-created with John Enbom, Rob Thomas, Dan Etheridge and Paul Rudd, Party down features a star-studded cast that also includes Ken Marino, Jane Lynch, Ryan Hansen, Martin Starr, and Megan Mullally.
During an interview with The Hollywood ReporterCaplan describes the “devastating” feeling of having to choose between a regular role on Party down and her Hulu series Fleishman is in troublehow the surprise cameo came about in the end, why it’s so important to her that the series gets another season, why Casey’s absence during the six-episode run might have been a blessing in the end, and if there’s any chance for more meat man.
At what point did you have to make the decision to miss a regular role for party down’s return?
It was the end of 2021. I knew I was going to do it meat man at the beginning of the year and Fatal attraction at the end of the year, and then Party down came together somewhere during all those very long negotiations meat man. I was just very adamant, “Guys, we need to figure it out. Obviously I’m not missing Party down – not really. I get on a plane when I have seven hours off and race back to LA, make a scene and come back. Anything I have to do, I’m willing to do it, so let’s figure it out.” And they said, “No.” (laughs.)
The meat man team said no?
It was impossible to put that in the deal because of COVID. There was no flying back and forth on planes. We were still very much under the thumb of COVID and for good reason. Many people got COVID on both Fatal attraction And meat man, and it derailed production. I would have worn seven masks, but they couldn’t legally wrap their heads around them. It was devastating. Had I been less enthusiastic about the idea of doing meat manthe decision wouldn’t have been so painful.
Until the 11th hour, I miraculously thought something would work out, and I could do both. I will officially say I have not regretted the decision when we get picked up for season four (laughs), and I can be there Party down season four. But if I get my emotions out of it completely, the story probably benefited the show with Casey only coming in at the very end — as much as that kills me to say.
Because you enjoyed exploring things with Evie?
Yeah, I thought all this Evie stuff worked so, so well. I’m in awe of John Enbom and Dan Etheridge and Rob Thomas – everyone who makes the show. I’m amazed that they managed to get all these people back in the same room 12 years later in a credible way and in a fairly short time. Perhaps one more person would have tipped the scales too much. This was their job they had 12 years ago when they were all trying to do and be something different. I think I’m probably just trying to justify things afterwards. (laughs.) I’m sure they would have made it work perfectly if I could have done all season. But if we get a season four, everything happened exactly as it was supposed to happen. If we don’t get season four, I’ll never, ever be sad about this.
It’s amazing that the revival happened at all. When the show’s initial run ended, I remember being stunned that America failed to support it.
It’s so wild. And to come back and really not miss a beat, like everybody’s firing on all cylinders. I liked it so much, I just got to see it as a spectator. I didn’t know if I would have mixed feelings about that if it was going to be hard. And I have to say that every episode just killed me with laughter. I felt really lucky that I could text each of these people and tell them how brilliant they are and pick out specific things that they did that just destroyed me.
Were you involved in conversations about where Casey’s path has taken her?
There was a version of the show where Casey was on season. I can’t remember if I read a script or if I just heard about it. But it was something similar that she was on a show, and so somehow she’d made it. There’s a lot of fertile ground there for future seasons because someone had to make it.
What do you remember when you realized you could at least make the last cameo work?
They came up with the idea, which was such an instant yes. I was in production on meat manand they [wanted to] figure out how to do this on a sneaky day.
How did it feel to have Casey and Henry back together?
It was amazing. I love Casey and Henry. It was just amazing and great to see Ken for a very short time too, even though we don’t share screen time. It just felt like this is a story I would love to keep telling. I love their relationship so much. I’m so proud to be on this show, and I’m just proud of all this Henry-Casey stuff. It always worked so well, and I was always rooting for them.
It seems obvious how you’d feel about a fourth season, but has anything been said about making more episodes?
Nobody told me. I wish more than anything that I could tell you right now. I don’t know what would have to happen to make it come back. I don’t know what the ratings are. I don’t know what caused the number of subscribers Party down. But I do know that this time, as an ordinary spectator, it works on every level. They have completely done their job by releasing only six perfect episodes. And so I’d be shocked if it didn’t come back, but Party down is nothing but an underdog.
You mentioned Fleishman is in trouble. Is there any possibility of it returning for another season?
No, there was never meant to be a season two meat man. That was very much a one-and-doner and it should be. On a human, personal level, it was another one of my all-time favorite jobs. I loved to make meat man; That’s where I loved my castmates; I loved [series creator] Kind of candy [Brodesser-Akner]. We have to film in New York. It was a very, very special, wonderful job. For myself, I would do a thousand more seasons of it meat man, but for the play itself it was mainly a story with a beginning, middle and end. And I ultimately believe more than I believe in my own personal desires.
Interview edited for length and clarity.