The Riverdale cast opened up about filming Luke Perry’s tribute episode during an appearance at New York Comic-Con.
Fans are aware that the Season 4 premiere will be a stand-alone episode dedicated to Perry and his character Fred Andrews. The cast got real about having to open up old wounds regarding Perry’s shocking death.
It was not an easy task but one the entire cast deemed necessary for fans of Luke Perry and Riverdale. Their panel at New York Comic-Con gave some of the cast members the chance to share what it felt like to film the tribute episode.
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“It was very difficult for us all. To me, in some ways, it meant reliving something incredibly painful. We felt the need and the want [to pay him tribute]. But I don’t think any of us wanted to live in that again, the first episode of the season was a beautiful episode, but incredibly hard to perform,” shared said Skeet Ulrich, who plays F.P. Jones.
Molly Ringwald, who plays Archie’s (KJ Apa) mom and Fred’s ex-wife, Mary, called it cathartic.
“For me, it was very cathartic. I think we all dealt with it in different ways. I didn’t get to go to Luke’s memorial, so this episode was really like my good-bye to him. It was kind of what I needed. He was my guy. It felt like a nice good-bye for me,” said the actress.
Mark Consuelos, who plays Hiram Lodge, admitted it put life in perspective for him. Consuelos’ on-screen wife, Marisol Nichols, who plays Hermoine Lodge, admitted she still expects to see Perry and Fred at Pops. She also revealed the Beverly Hills 90210 heartthrob’s spirit and presence is felt on set every day.
Cole Sprouse, who plays Jughead Jones, did not comment on Perry’s tribute during the Comic-Con panel. The actor did speak on the difficult topic in a recent interview with Variety.
“The important line we’ve all been trying to draw is how to separate, how we can portray real emotions, but in the eyes of the characters. If I was making this an entire sob story about my relationship with Luke, it wouldn’t be a job well done. My job is to do it in the eyes of Jughead. Luke was the kind of guy who would not like people crying about him. I hope this episode does him justice, but I think the way we lived with him does him justice as well,” Sprouse explained.
Filming has been difficult for Apa, who was Perry’s leading scene partner on the show. However, the young actor was focused on honoring his friend. At the Teen Choice Awards in August, Apa told Extra it is a beautiful episode, but an emotional one.
The loss of Luke Perry is still felt deeply by the cast of Riverdale. They pushed through the challenges of filming a tribute episode, as they said goodbye to Fred and Perry one last time.
Riverdale airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on The CW.