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The Goldbergs will play tribute to their patriarch with the show’s ninth season premiere.
George Segal died in March, two days before the ABC comedy wrapped production on its eighth season. As such, the show wasn’t able to pay an in-episode tribute to the actor who played Pops on the series (though it did air a title card noting his passing).
When the show returns on Sept. 22, The Goldbergs will both pay homage to a 1980s movie, as it’s done in several past season premieres, and honor Segal, star and executive producer Wendi McLendon-Covey said Thursday.
“Every time we open a season, it’s a movie tribute,” McLendon-Covey said during a panel at the Television Critics Association press tour. “We’re doing one that takes us on the journey of where to spread Pops’ ashes. It’s hysterically funny, and you’ll cry your eyes out. Sean Giambrone and I could barely get through filming.”
She added that “we’ll be mentioning George a lot this season.”
Segal appeared in more than 160 of The Goldbergs‘ 185 episodes over its first eight seasons, playing the advice-dispensing, up-for-anything grandfather to Adam (Giambrone), Barry (Troy Gentile) and Erica (Hayley Orrantia). Series creator Adam F. Goldberg wrote after Segal’s death that “It was a true honor being a small part of George Segal’s amazing legacy. By pure fate, I ended up casting the perfect person to play Pops. Just like my grandfather, George was a kid at heart with a magical spark.”
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