One of Glenne Headly's last projects before she died in June was on Hulu original Future Man, and the comedy's cast and creators, gathered before reporters at the Television Critics Association's summer press tour on Thursday afternoon, spoke fondly about the late actress in their first promotional appearance for the project, stressing that the loss won't be addressed on camera.
"It was obviously devastating to us," said showrunner Ben Karlin. "She was a big part of the show. It's tough in any environment — but when you're making a comedy, it really throws a wrench in things."
Headly, known for starring roles in Dick Tracy, Mr. Holland's Opus and many other features, was cast as the mother of Josh Hutcherson's character on Future Man. She filmed five of the 13 first-season episodes before she died from complications of a pulmonary embolism on June 9. Despite the heavy reliance on her character in those episodes, producers maintained that writing around the loss was not an issue.
"It was during a part of production where we didn't have to do much rewriting," Karlin added of the time-travel series. "It was less of a production challenge and more of an emotional challenge."
"She was like a ball of light," said fellow castmember Eliza Coupe, who had just finished another a movie with Headly before starting on Future Man. Every room she walked, she lit up."
Seth Rogen, an executive producer on the series who also directed the pilot, summed it up best: "It just sucks."