Beverly Hills, Calif. — Matt Miller recounted the origin of his new ABC procedural drama Forever Tuesday at the TCA summer press tour.
His 5-year-old son asked him if he was going to die one day. After initially saying, “No,” Miller told his son that “I will die some day and won’t for a very long time and by then you’ll probably want me to be dead.”
Forever — premiering on Sept. 22 before settling into its normal Tuesday at 10 p.m. timeslot the next day — revolves around Dr. Henry Morgan (Ioan Gruffudd), a New York City medical examiner who cannot die; when Henry, who is more than 200 years old, “dies,” he reappears naked in the ocean.
“It came from this idea of a character who had this thing all of us want,” Miller said, “but didn’t want it anymore.”
As the show is a procedural, each week Henry and detective Jo Martinez (Alana De La Garza) will find a body and try to resolve the case by the end of episode. Judd Hirsch plays Abe, the only person who knows Henry’s secret.
Highlights from the panel included:
— Miller said that Henry does experience the pain of death, so “we don’t want to kill him every episode.” Miller said that Henry will die in the “first couple episodes” before selling into a pattern where there are “more like special occasion deaths.”
— Asked if there is a certain kind of death would actually kill Henry, Miller quipped, “cancellation.”