Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz in BONES - Season 8 - "The But in the Joke" | ©2012 Fox/Ray Mickshaw

Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz in BONES - Season 8 - "The But in the Joke" | ©2012 Fox/Ray Mickshaw

BONES, now in its eight season on Fox, Monday nights at 8 PM, announced its Season 9 pickup very early – January, in fact (most shows wait until the May upfronts). The series, developed by executive producer/show runner Hart Hanson from Kathy Reichs’ life and novels, follows the adventures in murder-solving and romance of FBI Special Agent Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz) and forensic anthropologist Dr. Temperance “Bones” Brennan (Emily Deschanel), now partners in parenting their daughter, as well as work colleagues and lovers.

Stephen Nathan, who executive-produces and show-runs BONES alongside Hanson, took time at a party thrown by Fox for the Television Critics Association to talk about where the show is at present and where it may be going next season.

ASSIGNMENT X: When did you know about the Season 9 pickup?

STEPHEN NATHAN: Well, we kind of knew the show had been picked up for two years last year, but it was all contingent on David and Emily’s deals being made, and I think when that happened, that and the performance of the show – even though they give you two years, they can always take it back. And I think the show performed very well this year and I figured this was a good time to announce it.

AX: Did anybody need to be persuaded to re-enlist, or did everybody want to do a ninth season?

NATHAN: Oh, everybody wanted to do it. I know it sounds odd in that this is Year Eight – we still like doing the show and we still have a lot more episodes to do.

AX: Can you say what kind of time jump there’s going to be between the end of Eight and the beginning of Nine?

NATHAN: It could be the next day, it could be a year later. We’re really not sure. We are planning to continue the Pelant [the serial killer played by Andrew Leeds] story for as long as we can reasonably and organically do it, so that might travel over into Season 9.

Stephen Nathan at The PaleyFest 2012 for Media Honors BONES | ©2012 Sue Schneider

Stephen Nathan at The PaleyFest 2012 for Media Honors BONES | ©2012 Sue Schneider

AX: Back in Season 3, some people were vocally unhappy with the serial killer plot arc that year, but you’ve had some more successful serial killer arcs since then, with the Gravedigger and now Pelant …

NATHAN: Well, I think Hart and I are usually not big serial killer fans. But the last few we’ve had, we’ve had fun with. Pelant just seems to touch a chord in us. It’s just a unique person for us to deal with, so we love him.

AX: Do you watch what’s happening on THE FOLLOWING, which runs immediately after BONES on Fox, to make sure that your serial killer isn’t too much like their serial killer?

NATHAN: No. We haven’t seen their episodes, so we’re doing ours, they’re doing theirs. I don’t think we’ll have a big overlap. They’re a very, very different kind of show. I don’t think they’re going to be humorous as much as we are.

AX: Brennan and Booth became a couple at the end of Season 6, but it seems like that didn’t change their relationship to any great extent. Were you very careful about not changing that?

NATHAN: Absolutely. The only way we could have done it was skipping the whole romantic part when they first get together, and we did that by having them have a baby. It just skips all of the stuff – you have to become very practical and deal with life, and the way that they’ve had to deal with it as partners, now they’re dealing it, dealing with a child. So it just kept everything going exactly the same.

AX: With Brennan and Booth having a baby daughter and Angela [Michaela Conlin] and Hodgins [TJ Thyne] having a baby son, you have some extremely young actors in the show. Are you going to have to recast them if you jump forward in time?

NATHAN: Well, it just depends. It seems as if they’re growing at the proper rate, so we might have the same kids.

John Francis Daley, David Boreanaz, Emily Deschanel in BONES - Season 8 - "The Friend in Need" | ©2013 Fox/John Johnson

John Francis Daley, David Boreanaz, Emily Deschanel in BONES - Season 8 - "The Friend in Need" | ©2013 Fox/John Johnson

AX: Are you happy about the way the rotating lab assistants, aka the “squinterns,” have been working out?

NATHAN: Love them. That’s worked very well for us. These guys are going to come and go. They’re highly sought-after actors. We have to protect ourselves a little bit and also we get to work with some amazing people and create some new characters.

AX: Are there any other actors/characters who could come back, like Enrico Colantoni as the is-he-or-isn’t-he-real lab security guard?

NATHAN: We love him. David Alan Grier [as Bunsen Jude the Science Dude] we love – there are a lot of people we want to have back.

AX: With Enrico Colantoni, if he did come back, would you feel obliged to say one way or another whether his character is real or not?

NATHAN: We might.

AX: Do you have a favorite episode of the last couple of seasons?

NATHAN: Well, there have been a lot. [Some of the ones this year] are phenomenal. We have one where Pelant comes back – fabulous episode. We have one where Brennan has a near-death experience. I have a lot of favorites.

AX: What would you most like people to know about BONES right now?

NATHAN: I just want everyone to tune in to see where all of these relationships might end up, because no one’s going to end up the way you think they are.

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Comments:

  1. i am soo excited for season nine but i would love to know what happens to Booth’s brother Jared and i am also so curious to hear what has happened with Bones’ brother Russel because he hasnt been really seen in the last few seasons.

    Paige
  2. I LOVE this series! It is very rare that I love both the Book character AND the TV one. Both are different, but I really do love them both. I tell folks about both all the time. I’m hoping for at least 13 seasons! Well Done!

    Dani Moore

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