Glee Future in Doubt After Death of Star

Glee cory

THE sudden death of Glee star Cory Monteith has Hollywood executives racing to figure out how the show can continue without him.

Executives at Fox have had to call emergency meetings to discuss the more practical realities of how Glee can continue in the wake of Monteith’s sudden death.

The 31-year-old actor was found dead in a hotel room in Vancouver, Canada on Saturday after he failed to check-out on time.

Sources say the first few episodes of the new season heavily feature Monteith’s much-loved character, Finn Hudson.
While Fox had planned to premiere the show’s fifth season earlier than usual in the US, so as to avoid issues with the US baseball playoffs, it is still unclear whether production – scheduled to begin next week – and the subsequent premiere date will be pushed back.

A Hollywood entertainment insider says Monteith’s tragic death has left a “major hole in the heart” of his hit TV show and his character was being positioned for an even larger role.

“Not only has Monteith’s character Finn been part of the show’s most significant romantic relationship opposite Lea Michele’s Rachel, in the fourth season he appeared to be being long-term positioned to eventually assume the role of Glee club coach and overall student mentor should Matthew Morrison’s Mr. Shue leave the series,” Scott Huver told FOX 411’s Pop Tarts column.

“He leaves a major hole in the heart of the show that will be challenging for the writers and producers to address.

“While the Glee staff and especially series creator Ryan Murphy have never shied away from handling controversial, tragic or dark subject matter, translating Monteith’s loss into a ‘death of Finn’ storyline may simply prove too sad and all-consuming for the show, but glossing over his absence seems unrealistic.

“Whatever they decide, the writers will have to proceed very delicately lest dealing with the outcome overwhelm the show’s generally light, fun-loving tone.”

Crisis communications expert Glenn Selig of The Publicity Agency says approaching the tragedy head-on may be the best way to deal with the star’s sudden death at the weekend.

He explained that dedicating a storyline to Finn’s untimely death may help fans cope with the sad news in real life.

“They may decide to handle what happened honestly; his character may be portrayed as dying suddenly and shockingly. That may provide both the cast and the public to grieve,” he said.

“Whatever producers decide to do they will need to tread carefully because Cory Monteith was so well liked and what happened is so incredibly tragic.”

Representatives for Glee and Fox executives released an official statement after learning of Cory’s death.

“We are deeply saddened by this tragic news. Cory was an exceptional talent and an even more exceptional person. He was a true joy to work with and we will all miss him tremendously. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and loved ones,” it read.

Co-star Naya Rivera also issued a statement.
“The entire Glee family and I are deeply saddened by this tragedy,” she told The Hollywood Reporter.

“Cory was and always will be a part of my own family and a good friend. He was a special part of this world and will forever be missed. My heart goes out to Cory’s family and Lea [Michele] and while we are grateful for everyone’s well wishes, privacy during this time of grief is greatly appreciated.”

The cause of death is currently unknown, but it has been reported an autopsy is currently underway and results will be processed within days.

Authorities in Canada say it could take several days before toxicology test results are in.

Vancouver police Sergeant Randy Fincham said there’s nothing to indicate the death was due to illicit drug use.

Monteith was dating his Glee co-star Lea Michele at the time of his passing. She has asked for privacy to grieve following his death.

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