The second season ofÂ TNT’s Dallas remake kicks off tonight, and word is the scriptwriters will be incorporating the real-life death of Larry Hagman/J.R. Ewing into this season’s shows. After that plot line plays out, though, won’t a Dallas without the iconic villain be sort of like Seinfeld without Jerry Seinfeld, or The Office without Steve Carrell? Wrong, insisted cast members who showed up for a Dallas premiere at Highland Park Village Theatre last night. Brenda Strong, who plays Bobby Ewing/Patrick Duffy’s third wife and the new Southfork matriarch, said the show is an ensemble effort, and there will be plenty of strong scripts featuring villainous characters to come.
Dallas-born Josh Henderson, who plays J.R.’s son, J.R. Ewing III, had a slightly different take. “Larry is the heart of the original Dallas, and he is the heart of the show. So all we can do is really pay tribute to him, to his talent, to what he did for TV history, and hopefully continue to move this show on,” said Henderson (pictured in photo by Jeanne Prejean). “It’s gonna be tough without him. Doing Dallas without Larry Hagman is a tough thing to do. At the end of the day we love him and we miss him and we hopefully will continue this legacy in his honor, because, obviously, we still have Patrick and everyone else. But you can’t replace Larry. I don’t think that you can’t do Dallas without him, but it’s a different show. He would want nothing more than for this show to go another 10, 12 years, because he knows as long as Dallas is on the air, J.R. and the spirit of Larry Hagman will be current and in people’s lives.”