9:09pm PT by Michael O'Connell
'How I Met Your Mother' Showrunners Skirt Finale Questions
Time is running out for How I Met Your Mother. The CBS comedy's season-long sendoff comes to a close at the end of March with the series finale. And now that the cast has shot the final episode, and co-creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas are finishing edits on the last episode, most of them gathered one last time on Friday night at PaleyFest.
Cobie Smulders, Josh Radnor, Alyson Hannigan, Cristin Milioti, director Pamela Fryman and Neil Patrick Harris (via Skype) joined the showrunners on stage at the Dolby Theatre, and talk of the one-hour March 31 finale dominated early conversation -- not that anyone could say much.
VIDEO: 'How I Met Your Mother's' Cristin Milioti Debunks Morbid Finale Theory
Moderator and frequent guest castmember Wayne Brady asked Bays and Thomas point-blank if there was anything to the recent foreshadowing that the Mother (Milioti) dies in the last episode.
"We're wildly excited about the finale, and it's great, but obviously we can't say anything," said Bays.
"I think one of the great things about How I Met Your Mother is that it's surprising," added Thomas. "It does really weird things sometimes. ... We have been the worst interview in show business for years."
The duo actually weren't any kind of interview on Saturday. Bays and Thomas skipped red carpet interviews before the panel.
STORY: HIMYM Creators Talk About the Series Finale
There was last episode talk on stage, but most of it was understandably cryptic. "The last scene that i filmed was the scene that I tested with Josh," said Milioti. "To have that be the last thing, I could barely get through it."
As for that scene, it is (unsurprisingly) the moment Ted and the Mother meet on the train platform. (If the character ever gets a name, that will probably be the moment.)
"That's the last thing we ever shot, the yellow umbrella scene, the moment he meets her," said Thomas. "There's this gleeful feeling that ... We got there, and it took nine f---ing years."
Much of the evening was also reserved for ruminations on the last year, though the Skyped-in Harris probably got the best reaction with his declaration of love for his colleagues. He gave personalized thank-yous from his New York bedroom, pixelated tears in his eyes, while stripping down to change his clothes.