Lauren Graham Interview on End of Gilmore Girls

Lauren Graham has given her first interview with Ausiello since the announcement that Gilmore Girls is ending.

The fast-approaching finale of Gilmore Girls is depressing on so many levels; I get a lump in my throat contemplating even a few of them. It’s the end of an era, for starters. Lauren Graham — the closest thing Hollywood is ever likely to get to another Katharine Hepburn — may never again play a character as given to bantering at breakneck speed as Lorelai. For that matter, she may never find verbal sparring partners as worthy as Kelly Bishop and Scott Patterson. But maybe worst of all, the series’ demise probably means I’ll be talking to my favorite Girl a lot less frequently. With that weighing heavily on my mind, as we began what would be our last interview of the golden Girls age, I held nothing back. In turn, neither did she.

I hear you’re going to have a lot more free time on your hands.
Lauren Graham: (Laughs) Yes, it would seem that way.

Are you relieved that it’s over?
Graham: I feel that way, which is not without feeling mixed and thankful for the experience. But, yeah, I feel relieved.

All indications were that the show was coming back for 13 episodes. What happened?
Graham: Well, you know, there was a lot that went back and forth by the time the [13 episode thing] came out. I had sort of said to them a couple of months ago that I didn’t see it coming back, and they had asked to just give them some time to figure something out that would make it work. Both Alexis and I felt tired, and also creatively like the show was in a place where we were either at the end or very close to it. We really couldn’t imagine another season. I think they were trying to tempt us with 13, which was tempting, but ultimately it just wasn’t going to work for them. We needed the situation to be so ideal, and I think it just wasn’t meant to be. I do want to say that the studio and the network were very generous and very respectful in this whole process. We just didn’t want to work the schedule we’d been working. But if we’re working a lesser schedule, what is the show? The way we’d like to have done it would not have necessarily been good for the show. Right now you have me working six to seven days an episode, and Alexis doing about the same. To do anything less than that just wasn’t going to be the same show. They tried to make it appealing for us, and we tried to be imaginative, but then at the end of the day it just felt like we were trying to do something impossible.

Continued after the jump…

Did you and Alexis band together during negotiations?
Graham: Not in a formal way, but we certainly discussed what our hopes were. We were very open with each other. Most of our conversations were, "Can we imagine coming back."

Is it true that Alexis was the harder sell?
Graham: I don’t think that’s true. I did formally say at one point, "I’m not coming back." Then they thought, "Well, can we do it with just Alexis?" I don’t want to speak for her, but we both went back and forth. Ultimately, neither of us wanted to do it without the other one.

Was that a real possibility?
Graham: If she was in a place where she wanted, like, her own show or her own spin-off… They were trying to think of everything. There was a time when we thought maybe I would produce and not be on the show in the same capacity. I’ve been at this for a long time; I feel ready to move on. But they were trying to find a way to make it work. There were a lot of scenarios. I had very open conversations with Dawn Ostroff. We tried, but they ultimately said, "You know what? This is just too complicated." And I felt so glad, because I don’t think it would’ve been the same show for another 13. We were trying to find a way we could have a slightly easier schedule, and there was really no way to do that and still have it be Gilmore Girls.

Were you happy with the show creatively this season?
Graham: I was happy with the process. I really enjoyed [working with] the writers. I felt every year, even under Amy’s leadership, that the show evolved. For the last episode, we tried to match the final shot with the first scene from the pilot, so we went back and watched the pilot — which I haven’t seen for so long. And the show now is really different from that pilot, which was more dramatic at the time than your typical WB show. And I think it evolved and got more comedic over the years; every year was an evolution. This year was strange sometimes because I had a lot less to say, and that was really weird. For some people I’m sure that was great, but I would find myself in long scenes where I was not rattling on, and it was just really weird to me. And so I did sort of question, "Are we keeping this character consistent?" And they were responsive to me.

When we spoke last year you mentioned that you’d like to someday be given a producer credit, but you said there was no way Warner Bros. would allow it. Well, this year they gave you a producer credit. What changed?
Graham: I really felt strongly that I was doing the job of a producer. And in order to imagine moving forward — which I was imaging at the time — I really hoped they would recognize the different job I was doing. And eventually they very nicely did. When the creator of the show is gone, the actors end up being the people who have been there the longest. And I got more involved with where the story was headed, and felt that I was having more of an active role. I just thought it was warranted.

I heard that you requested some changes to the finale script…
Graham: How do you hear these things Mike!? Where will all your moles go now that the show is over! (Laughs)

Good question! So, what changes did you ask for?
Graham: My feeling was [the episode] just felt too light to me — even as a season finale. I thought this should be an opportunity to say good-bye, or at least have some sort of acknowledgement of all these characters. I [also] wanted it to be more dramatic. And David Rosenthal was extremely responsive — moreso than he needed to be. So he went back and took another look at it, with more of an eye to, "How can we acknowledge all of these characters? Give everyone a moment." I felt it was important to go a little deeper.

Do you think Luke and Lorelai fans will be satisfied with how things end?
Graham: Yeah. You know, the other thing I felt strongly about is that this is a show that is ultimately about these girls. It started with this mother-daughter relationship, and we haven’t been a show where big events happen. So I always worried that there would be some pressure to… (Laughs) My extreme example was always, "Double wedding!" I just didn’t want there to be a big event. But there’s definitely a direction [with Luke/Lorelai] that I think will be satisfying.

Were you surprised at how reluctant fans were to let Luke and Lorelai go when she went off and married Christopher this season?
Graham: Well, it was a tough story to follow. We got married really impulsively. I always wanted [the Luke/Lorelai/Christopher triangle] to be as complex as it could be so that there wasn’t an obvious choice. It’s like when you go see some romantic comedy movie and you’re like, "Well, obviously she shouldn’t be with that guy." They make it too easy. I just sort of wanted them to write Christopher in a way that made it a real love triangle. But everything happened so fast. The Luke and Lorelai story is where the show started. That should be the thing they’re rooting for, because that’s what the show set up. That makes complete sense.

Conspiracy theorists maintain that you pushed for a Lorelai/Christopher romance because of your prickly relationship with Scott Patterson.
Graham: You’re the conspiracy theorist! (Laughs) I finally figured it out!

No, I’m not! You wouldn’t believe how many questions I get about this. Is it much ado about nothing?
Graham: Yes, it was overblown. I mean, I am closer, personally, to David [Sutcliffe]. And we’ve gone to dinner together. I always thought that maybe people thought I was trying to give him some sort of advantage because we’re friends. But that’s not it. Like I said, when a show is continuing for so long, I didn’t want there to be an obvious choice, because then the show is over; there’s nowhere to go. So I always argued for other [romantic complications] because I thought it made the story better. But I always felt that it would cheat the fans to not have the [Luke and Lorelai] relationship be important in the whole of the show.

How would you characterize your working relationship with Scott over the years?
Graham: Totally great. It’s a working relationship, like most of them are. But he was so great in that part. I really loved my scenes with him and the chemistry we had. Our banter was among the most fun stuff to do.

Is it bittersweet ending without Amy?
Graham: Yeah. What I hoped — and this is not to take away from David Rosenthal, who I had a really nice year with — was that she would write the finale. But that’s not the way she works. She’s either there 100 percent [or not at all]. She couldn’t just come in and pick up another story that she didn’t lay the groundwork for and finish it. I wish she had been more involved this year, because I was playing a piece of her that is so specifically her. I missed her writing.

Have you spoken to her since the announcement was made?
Graham: We e-mailed and we’re supposed to have a drink this week.

Are you going to try and get her to divulge the final four words she had planned to end the series with?
Graham: Oh, right — I forgot about that. I think she would’ve given it up to me had we known this was the end. That was the other weird thing about ending the show like this. When we finished [shooting], there was a 50/50 chance we’d be returning. So when we left the wrap party, we were like, "Bye! See ya next season!" Had we known [this was it], I think she would’ve given it up and we would’ve worked it in.

Favorite memories?
Graham: Oh, gosh. There was a real kind of high — that’s the only way I can describe it — when we’d get these big athletic speeches and then nail it after 35 takes. (Laughs) And that is a feeling that I really haven’t had with another part. To do that language all systems have to be go; you have to really have a lot of concentration. And that feeling was really exhilarating. I’ll miss that experience as an actor. And there was a specific sense of humor and music to the way [Amy] would write these speeches that I’ll really miss. And these are people that I loved, whether I see them every day or not. Alexis and I fell over laughing many, many times — partially out of exhaustion. (Laughs) We really bonded in a very unique way. And I’ll miss the feeling of [being around] a crew, all of whom I know and feel really at home with and really supported by. That was not an easy show to do and that crew was really great.

Favorite episode?
Graham: Oh my God. I literally can’t even remember the last one.

Maybe a scene that stood out?
Graham: There really were so many. The dinner tables, while a drag to shoot because it takes forever getting all the angles, were really, really fun.

So, when’s the Gilmore Girls reunion?
Graham: (Laughs) We’re totally doing the Gilmore Girls movie. I’m never, ever going to do anything else. There’s Gilmore Girls: The Musical. The line of clothing called Lorelai. And the perfume called Stars Hollow… No, you know, I’m promoting Evan Almighty, which comes out in June. And I have been reading a lot. And sleeping. (Laughs) But I’m auditioning for things, and I’m going to try and do another movie soon.

Would you do another TV series?
Graham: I would do another TV series, but not right away. I love TV. I think I’d do a half-hour single camera comedy. But I’m going to really just enjoy this time and make sure I’m ready to do something new. If I had the best thing in front of me right now I don’t know that I’d be able to be excited about it, ’cause I think [you have to make room] to let the other thing pass. So, yeah, I’d love to take a year and see what else I can do.

Anything you’d like to say to the fans?
Graham: Just that I’ve been truly thankful for their support and for their fanaticism (Laughs) and their investment in these characters through all the ups and downs of a seven-year process. I can’t tell you what a kick I get out of [hearing from the fans], especially the younger people over the years who have grown up with the show and have [developed] a bond with a family member from a different generation while watching it together. I hope when I’m 55 and I’ve been out of a job for a long time and those girls are running the studios that they remember Lorelai Gilmore.

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    • Robin

      I agree with SoSad. You can tell from that interveiw that LG knew damn well awhile ago that she wasn’t going to be returning. In one part of her interveiw she says they thought they were all coming back and in another part she says she wanted to make changes to the ending to give each character a moment. She wanted them to say good-bye because she knew. I wouldn’t believe a word that this woman says. She should have cared more about what her fans wanted and less about how much she dislikes SP. After watching a show for 7 years and having it end this way is just a shame. Shame on LG she could have made sure we got the ending we wanted!

    • Gilmore Girl Forever Fan

      I am still so sad. I just cannot except the fact that the show is gone. I love Lauren and all but I think she was vague in her answers. And how can the “Bon Voyage” episode be a success if they didn’t know whether or not it would be the series finale?

    • Hallie

      I really enjoyed reading this article. It really helped me understand that the show must come to an end.

      At first, I was worried about the ending not being good enough, but if Lauren is satisfied with it, then I’m sure I will be too. She seems to care a lot about the show’s creativity, so I don’t think that she would’ve let it end with a bad finale.

    • Emily

      Are you going to try and get her to divulge the final four words she had planned to end the series with?

      i’ve never been able to figure it out. what are the 4 words they’re talking about. thankx

    • PATTI


    • Sarah

      Canceling Gilmore Girls is a colossal mistake! But, what’s done is done I guess….but still…it’s so heartbreaking and sad…

    • Y

      With tears in my eyes I have to say that I’ll never forget Lorelai Gilmore.

    • Howard

      I found out for the first time this evening, at the end of tonight’s show. I felt like I got punched in my gut. I was sad and angry at the same time. But I think people should stop dumping on the girls about the money. I think a lot of it had to do with this years writing. Lauren hinted at the loss of her banter in the interview. I do wish Amy could have written the last episode.
      Good bye Gilmore Girls. You were a ray of sunshine on a Tuesday night. You will be missed dearly!

    • GG #1 fan

      I will miss u gilmore girls………..

    • MagnoliaKalin

      Today was a rather yucky day! It all had to do with the ending of this show too! Sad that I’m a pathetic psycho fan? Well of course, but even though I’m aware of it, I still can’t shake the blues! :P Though Lauren spoke well, this interview left me a tad bitter.

      I have watched this show from day one, like most of you, and I have become so invested in the Tuesday tradition! It really is part of my “life”. However, with this sad news, my emotions are getting the best of me! As selfish as it may sound, I feel gypped! And even a little angry too… yes angry! Wrap all this up with tears and ice cream, and you should have a great mental picture of me-hahaha.

      I so admire the cast of this show, I really do. I eagerly look for their other projects and I’m always excited to think that they are doing well… with both their career and personal lives respectively. I simply can’t understand the “reasoning” behind this decision though! I do agree that the writing for this season has been a little “un-Gilmore-like”, but it by no means ruined the show for me.

      Due to this change, I had in fact prepared myself for the ending of the series. I was convinced that it would be this time next year, however! I never dreamed I’d be sitting here at 3:10am, having watched the next to last episode (which didn’t impress me), typing some message that will go unnoticed in cyber space, mourning the abrupt end of my favorite show!

      I do not have magical powers, and I cannot say this for certain, but I don’t see how the final episode is going to be “satisfying” either. I am so disappointed that they are disrespecting the quality of the show in this way too! I have waited all these years to see certain story lines have appropriate closure! Especially the Lorelai / Emily relationship. This is not something that can be mended it a five minute segment for me either!

      I definitely think they should have put in some extra TLC to send off the best show on television. They would not have had to give it another 13 episodes in my opinion either… just enough to address all the major issues:

      Lorelai and Luke (of course), Rory and Lorelai (I had always envisioned that they would stay together as a team of some sort… even Rory doing something in Stars Hollow and following in Lorelai’s footsteps), Lorelai / Emily / Richard (how can they not give this it’s own episode entirely?!?) and lastly fit in all the fantastic towns people that make Stars Hollow so wonderful. I swear, were it a real place, I’d pack my bags and move tomorrow! No joke!

      Anywho, I better get to wrapping this up! Okey… will the end of this show kill us? Definitely not. Will we find yet another to pour our time/emotions into? Affirmative. But should we quietly swallow our sadness and move on without expressing our opinions? Heck no! =) And as corny as it may sound, I’d like to end by saying I feel like I’ve lost my best friend! ::tear::

      Be sure to get the tissues and junk food ( Can’t watch the girls without junk food) ready for next week everybody! Keep your fingers crossed for a miracle too… hey, we’ve got to have hope ::chuckles::

      XoXo ~Kalin

    • Manu_GG

      I just love Lauren Graham, she is the best actress ever! No one could do Lorelai better and more perfect than she did.
      …And guys…don’t blame her or Alexis.
      It was time…they couldn’t do another season without Amy.Even Lauren think that, i can tell.
      …GG will always be part of us, of our lives.
      Lorelai already is an unforgettable character.
      The world will always remember these girls, their relationship, the crazy and funny talks and references. They marked an age, a television age, that will always be remembered. GILMORE GIRLS is the kind of show that 30, 40 years from now, we gonna turn on the tv, and it’s gonna be there. Our kids gonna watch it! Our grandkids gonna watch it! Stars Hollow will be an eternal imaginary city, all the characters are already eternals. Our Lorelai, Rory, Luke, Emily, Richard, Lane, Sookie, etc, they will always be eternal. They gonna be used as reference in many other shows ahead.
      GILMORE GIRLS made us laugh, made us cry, made us think, made us get smarter, and be better persons.
      …The only thing i can say now is….THANKYOU LAUREN GRAHAM AND AMY SHERMMAN-PALLADINO, cause this show will always be remembered because of you, thanks to you. And ofcourse, the other actors too.
      …Lauren Graham is part of a television age, and she will always be remembered for that. LORELAI GILMORE IS ETERNAL.
      I’m gonna miss to see her, Lauren Graham, every week, to see my Lorelai….
      It’s very, very, very, very hard to do that, but it’s time to say good bye.
      …I’m in tears here, crying like a baby right now…..




    • Manu_GG

      …i just hope my mom doesn’t get home right now, to see me crying like this.

    • haley



    • Tessa

      `Well, you know for all those weird people out there that are stuck in the tube and think they are the decision making of a television show, GET A GRIP, OR BETTER YET, GET A LIFE! I love this show. My life has changed so much during this show. My now 10 year old was only 4 years old. We watched it together, even when she wasn’t at home, she called and we watched it together on the phone, the whole hour! So I cried and cried when it ended. However, Lauren and Alexis have a life as we do. They are both young and beautiful. They gave us a show that is not like any other. I have never watched or taped a show before. T.V. to me SUCKS! Too much nudity and cursing….I could go on and on. However, I LOVED the G&G! It gave me some sort of satisfaction in my own life…I don’t know how, it just did. I will miss them. What do I do on Tuesday nights now? Ya know? Life won’t be the same, but it was great when we had the girls on the tube! Thank you to all of the people that worked and sweated on that show. We will miss you all! love, a mother and a daughter

    • Timo

      Why is it always that good things have to come to an end? If it were just for me Gilmore Girls could go on forever… then again… thanks to all who made the Gilmmore Girls such a bright, funny, sad and entertaining series.

    • Kim

      Oh my god, even it’s been many months since the very end of Gilmore girls, I’m still sad. Now, I really miss the show. I think that the end was not what I should have been. I didn’t just want Luke and Lorelai to get back together, I wanted to see it for real. Do they think it’s enough to see a kiss in the 30 last seconds? And the thing I don’t understand, is why spending almost 3 seasons building a relationship with Rory and Logan and ending it that way. That’s ok she’s not getting married, but was this break up really necessary?

      Anyway, after reading this interview, I totally understand the no 8th season decision and I respect that. After all, the 7th season wasn’t the same anyway, without Amy… But I think that Lauren is one of the best actress I’ve seen, and I’ve enjoy every each moment of her playing, all her talent and, as you all sais, her class. She’s so bright and so funny, I’ll miss her. I grew up with this show, and I can’t realise it’s never going to be there again.

    • Caitlin

      I was really really REALLY upset when I found out that Gilmore Girls wasn’t going to continue!
      It’s my #1 favourite show of all time and will remain my #1 favourite show of all time. There’s just something about it that is just so perfect; it’s hilarious (I could never get tired of the GG humour!), it has a witty and clever script, the characters are so lovable, it’s interesting, it’s dramatic, anybody could watch it (despite the name, it’s not just a girly show, my brother actually enjoys watching it), and it has such a great storyline, it has romance, humour, a great mother-daughter relationship, a great home town, Stars Hollow. And great people that live in Stars Hollow; the same people that make Gilmore Girls complete. These people include: Luke Danes, Miss Patty, Babette and Maurie, Kirk, Lulu, Lane, Mrs Kim, Richard and Emily Gilmore, Jess Mariano, TJ, Liz, Dean, Paris, Madelyn, Louise, Sookie, Michelle and many many others.

      I suppose that they are tired and it feels right for it to end. But in my heart I know that it should not end. Being a Gilmore Girls fan means that I sort of have two worlds; the world I live in and the Gilmore Girls world, which I escape to most of the time to hide from reality. And now that Gilmore Girls is my second world, IT CAN NOT END! What will I do without it? Sure, I can watch the seasons again and again and again. But after a while that will be boring! I’m not saying that Gilmore Girls should go on forever (mind you that wouldn’t be so bad), but why end now? Yes, I’ve heard Lauren’s point of view and totally respect it. But Gilmore Girls can’t end now! It just doesn’t seem right. What about the viewers? What about the future of Stars Hollow? Now we will never know what the future holds for Rory, for Luke and Lorelai, if they get married, if Richard or Emily dies. Nothing! And I can’t live without knowing the end. Remember that GG is my second life, my second world. How could I survive not knowing the end of my life? I couldn’t! And the same goes for the Gilmore Girls!

      I conclude: Gilmore Girls doesn’t have to last forever. But we need to know the end! The end of season seven left us puzzled and with so many questions. Those questions need answering!

    • Caitlin

      Now for reality. I know that it will probably never come back.

      I will miss Gilmore Girls so much!
      I will never forget it!
      I will never forget Rory and Lorelai Gilmore!
      I feel as though I’m losing part of my life!

      GG fanatics!!! Don’t give up. Just hope that there will be a GG reunion.

    • Caitlin

      I hate the saying, “All good things come to an end”. But this is an appropiate time to use that saying. But this is a good thing that SHOULDN’T come to an end. Never.

    • Jade

      This show was the best! It was so cleverly written and very witty. I think someone should turn the show into a movie! Oooh how I miss Gilmore Girls :(

    • Kati

      Ummm, if you have been wallowing over a show ending and not living your life, then obviously you don’t have a life, and I suggest you get one soon.

      I love Gilmore Girls as much as the next person. I watch it all the time, on DVD and re-runs. I love it with a passion, but you know what? It wasn’t going to last forever, and really, do you think 13 more episodes would have left you truly satisfied? I mean you would probably be bitching about something then too. It’s over, deal and move on. And honestly, I think that it would have been too perfect if it ended with L and L getting married. Now we can end it how we want.

      Lauren Graham’s interview was an okay interview. I mean she wasn’t overly forthcoming, but really, she probably won’t be, and neither will anyone else. What really happened is something that we will never know, and something that we probably shouldn’t know.

    • Deborah

      Actually they offered Lauren and Alexis a huge salary increase if they stayed for the 8th season, Alexis is the one who wanted to pursue her acting career and so Lauren wouldn’t do the show without her. I sure hope Alexis doesn’t get an acting career after this because I don’t think she’s a good actress.

    • Elle

      “No matter what kind of t.v. or movie project you do, you’re going to be working hard. I guess she just didn’t want to take half a year more to work hard on the GG conclusion we deserved.”

      that is just petty.
      actors work hard along with the crew but how do we have any idea what is actually going on with these people?? they want to have normal lives too and don’t you think they deserve that? true they chose the lime light but they don’t owe us anything!! we owe them for seven years of laughter and tears!! what did we give them?? one hour a week?!?! they plugged their lives into this!!

      give lauren and alexis a break.

      people need to just get over their hurt and stop being selfish.
      let Gilmore Girls live on in your heart! don’t go out hating the show and the people…deep down you don’t hate them but are just going to miss them.

    • http://Honkifyouagree. DR.K

      Hey Reinier has a point!

      If they hadn’t consumed most of this season w/ Chris, then the show would have had a proper ending.

      I don’t know about the money, but they should have given us a little more with the aspects of the show we really wanted to see (i.e. Luke/Lorelai).

      It is tragic that it’s gonna be yanked from under us and we are going to get this thrown together Finale.

      Honestly, this show is going to end with a lot of unanswered questions, and that defeats the purpose of entertaining with a series.

    • http://Honkifyouagree. DR.K

      Here Here!!!! I completly agree. I know actors get tired, but THAT’S WHY THEY GET PAID!!! That’s no excuse for leaving us die-hard fans in the dust as if we aren’t the reason they got famous in the first place!

      Give me break!They could have held on a little while long to give us what we really wanted to see! The truth is, even reruns can be unsatisfing when you know the ending is no up to par!!

      So sad that they didn’t consider the fans in their decision making!!

    • sandy

      That’s a real petty and stupid thing to say.

    • Erin

      I feel more at peace with the end of Gilmore Girls. At first it was too hard to deal with the fact that this was the end, finito, but just reading that Lauren is happy, then im happy as well. Does anyone realise that Alexis is staying particularly quiet throughout all of this? Lauren is shining through like a knight in shining armour throughout all of this… and Alexis… the sole of the knights foot. Dissapointed Alexis!

    • Erin

      I totally agree. Ive had to work my ass off every single day (6 days a week lol) for 3 entire years and ive just saved up enough to take a trip to Europe and the U.S.A which is my dream. I dont think they realise how lucky they are, and that yeah they may be tired… but some people out there… are a whole LOT MORE tired. And they dont even have husbands or kids… give me a break Lauren.

    • Ingeborgi

      Totally agree with you rebecca. Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel did an amazing job during the last seven years. They made us laugh and sometimes even cry and we should be thankful for the wonderful time they gave us. Of course they have been paid for that job but I think it`s understandable that they want to do something new with a lighter schedule.So give them a break. Our lifes` happiness should not depend on a tv show.

    • gaby

      I totally agree with you.

    • Claire

      The writing sucks now. Lauren knows it. She wants the show to maintain its creative integrity. It’s definitely time to end it. I don’t believe money was a factor at all. Those two are set for life due to syndication alone.
      Creatively, it’s just over.