The cast and crew of Fox’s sometimes gritty (and often more than a little absurd) procedural drama Bones have been through more ups and downs than even their unfortunate characters.
Bones is certainly not a family-friendly sort of show, but nobody expected this much drama lurking in the dark corners behind-the-scenes.
Behind-the-scenes circumstances led to surprise deaths (oh, yes, we’re going there) and cannibal apprentice plot twists (yeah, we’re going there, too). David Boreanaz grappled with his infidelity and a mysteriously settled harassment lawsuit. Then there was the schedule tampering and the spin-off series’ incredibly quick crash and burn.
Bones went through enough trials and tribulations to kill any other show five times over. It’s truly impressive that the series managed to last a full 12 seasons in spite of all the backstage madness. Is it any wonder why basically no one expected the show to last as long as it did?
From Emily Deschanel’s vegan pregnancy controversy to Temperance Brennan’s undiagnosed Asperger’s Syndrome and Trump’s presidential nomination speech, here are the 15 Secrets Behind Bones You Had No Idea About.
15. An Extra Accused David Boreanaz Of Harassment
David Boreanaz faced an extremely troubling allegation during his time on the show: he was accused of harassing one of the show’s extras.
Boreanaz completely denied the claims.
Kristina Hagan, who worked as an extra on Bones, said that Boreanaz approached her and asked for headshots.
Hagan said that Boreanaz claimed to have the ability to get her better roles in her career. She said that he went on to send her a large amount of “inappropriate messages.” According to Hagan, Boreanaz eventually became physical with Boreanaz, attempting to touch and kiss her.
Hagan filed a lawsuit against Boreanaz through celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred. The suit was settled in 2011, but the results were kept private, with both parties refraining from comment. Allred simply stated the matter had been “resolved.”
14. David Boreanaz And Emily Deschanel Sued For More Money
Deschanel and Boreanaz knew they were a major asset to the show. They believed themselves to be a big draw for viewers and felt they had been short-changed when it came to their share of the paycheck. The two actors sued Fox for “tens of millions of dollars” along with executive producer Kathleen Reichs ahead season 12.
The suit was not actually intended to up the amount earned per check. Rather, the claimants accused the studio of failing to pay the full 3 percent owed to Boreanaz and Deschanel.
Nor did Reichs receive the full 5 percent owed to her, the lawsuit claimed. The suit eventually disappeared from the public eye as a judge granted Fox’s request to arbitrate behind closed doors in 2016. It seems unclear whether or not the case was ever settled.
13. David Boreanaz Publicly Admitted To Cheating On His Wife
Most stars deny their infidelities tooth and nail, but Boreanaz admitted to both his wife and the general public that he had been unfaithful in his marriage to Jaime Bergman.
When the couple held a joint interview with People in 2010, they were both quick to blame themselves for the state of their marriage.
Boreanaz admitted he had been selfish and arrogant, while Bergman said she had become emotionally disconnected.
The pair affirmed that Boreanaz had come forward to his wife a year before going public, but that a perceived extortion attempt prompted them to clear the air with fans.
Bergman said that she realized fixing their relationship was not going to be easy but she felt that it was the right thing to do. Couples therapy seems to have paid off for these two, as they’re still together 8 years later.
12. Emily Deschanel’s Vegan Pregnancy Was Extremely Controversial
Women are often faced with intense scrutinization when they become pregnant (or when they choose not to) and that’s no different for even Hollywood’s most famous stars, sadly. Deschanel received harsh criticism and an onslaught of concerns when she chose to remain vegan during her pregnancy.
Deschanel’s detractors accused her of caring more about her looks than her child, while others claimed that a vegan diet was nothing more than an undiagnosed eating disorder.
Deschanel expressed frustration with the outcry, saying that there was no reason for her decision to be so controversial. The actress worked closely with a nutritionist to make sure that she received the proper nutrients even while filming. This often meant supplementing her meals with quick and easy (and nutritious) smoothies.
11. Other Actors Were Almost Cast As The Two Leads
Seeley Booth and Temperance “Bones” Brennan are arguably the entire point of the show. Other characters are popular, of course and, yes, fans do tune in for the plot twists and murder solving, but it’s often the undeniable chemistry between the will-they-won’t-they-they-did couple that is most often cited as the heart of the show.
That’s what makes it so surprising that actors Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz almost lost the roles to other people.
Directors originally looked at “pretty boy waifs” for the part of the Booth. Boreanaz came in and wowed execs, despite having a disastrous audition.
Once he and Deschanel read together, it became apparent that the two of them were the right fit. It was Deschanel’s chemistry with Boreanaz that helped her to win the role of Brennan from another actress who was preferred for the part.
10. Brennan Has Asperger’s Syndrome But Nobody Will Say It
Fans long suspected Brennan to have undiagnosed Asperger’s Syndrome. They pointed to her intellect and awkward conversational skills as evidence.
The show attempted to squash that fan theory in season 8 by explaining Brennan’s personality as a result of her relationship with her mother. However, the series creator, Hart Hanson, has confirmed that Brennan was based on a friend of his who had been diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome.
The only reason Bones never came out right and said Brennan had Asperger’s was because of the network, apparently. Hanson said they felt it would be a bad idea to give Brennan a “label” on a network TV show.
9. There Was A Spinoff That Lasted Only One Season
Bones was a huge success, raking in millions of dollars and spanning 12 seasons. Obviously, Fox recognized the hit that they had on their hands and thought they may be able to harness this success and turn it into a multi-series franchise… This plan failed, however, as the spin-off The Finder went off the air after only one season.
The series followed a man with the uncanny ability to find things.
It wasn’t quite as interesting as Bones‘ murder-solving plots and viewers tuned out en masse after Fox moved the show’s timeslot to Friday nights following an unexpected hiatus only seven weeks into the show’s debut.
8. Fox Moved The Show’s Air Date So Many Times It Hurt Ratings
Just as its spin-off The Finder met certain doom after a sudden change in its airtime, Bones was afflicted by poor ratings thanks to Fox constantly shifting it around on the schedule.
Obviously, after an 11-year run, the show was bound to lose viewers, and it did. In its penultimate season, the series drew a paltry 0.8 demographic rating. However, things got much worse when Fox decided to do a little shuffling to its line-up.
Fox put the show on an extended hiatus halfway through season 11 that wouldn’t see its return for the back half of the season until three full months had passed. This forced the show to wrap up in July, an incredibly odd time for a season finale in network television.
7. David Boreanaz Tweeted That The Show Was Ending Five Years Early
It’s not unusual for a star to confirm or deny the status of a series. They usually get it right, since they only show up to set every day, you know. However, sometimes, they get it very, very wrong, as was the case when David Boreanaz announced to all of Twitter that Bones would be ending after season 8.
Boreanaz told his Twitter followers that the series’ would likely not be back to the San Diego Comic-Con after their 2012 appearance.
He went on to say that after season 8 wrapped, he would once again be a “free agent,” as in he would be out of a job.
6. Emily Deschanel Thought The Show Would Only Last Three Years
David Boreanaz wasn’t the only one expecting Bones to end before its time. His co-star, Emily Deschanel, didn’t expect the series to reach season 12 either. In fact, she fully expected the procedural series to end after only season 3. However, maybe not for the reasons you might think.
Way back in season 9, with still another three seasons to go, Deschanel revealed her total surprise at the show’s outstanding longevity. The actress admitted that she had been blown away by the series’ success and that she couldn’t fathom more than three years at the start of the show.
5. Most Of The Science Is Completely Wrong
We don’t actually expect fictional TV shows to be a totally accurate representation when it comes to complicated, real-world science. However, it would be nice if they got something right.
According to an actual bioarchaeologist, even when Bones gets it a bit right, they still get it very wrong.
Along with a list of ways that the series’ episodes completely mangled the science at the heart of the plot, Kristina Killgrove had plenty to say about the show’s list of “good” science too.
For example, in season 6’s episode 16, Killgrove maintained that even though the science was sound, the assertion that the Jeffersonian wouldn’t have a generator was absurd.
4. Emily Deschanel Got Grossed Out By Her Own Show
The viewer is the one who is supposed to have a negative reaction to the bones and blood and gore of a procedural series, not the stars. However, according to Emily Deschanel, Bones grossed her out just as much as the rest of us, if not more so. It’s just the things that creeped her out were much different… and a bit more surprising.
In an interview with Today, Deschanel admitted that yes, she got grossed out by her own show, but not by the actual bones and death. It was “weird” things that really got to her.
Deschanel relayed a story involving coral inside a bone that really bothered her– just the coral itself. She said the porousness was what really did her in. She then jokingly claimed to have eaten lunch surrounded by all the fake corpses.
3. The Gormogon Plot Twist Happened Because Of A Writer’s Strike
Viewers were totally shocked by the big reveal that Zack Addy had been season 3’s cannibalistic serial killer Gormogon’s apprentice. Shocked fans learned that Addy had actually gone so far as to kill someone, but thankfully hadn’t “graduated” to actually eating his victims by the time his complicity had been discovered.
The plot was a controversial one. Some viewers were shocked, yet pleased, while others were very unhappy with Addy’s killer turn.
Regardless of how the episode was received, it almost didn’t happen.
According to Addy’s actor, Eric Millegan, the plot twist only came about due to a serendipitously timed writer’s strike. Millegan revealed unused storylines that Bones would have pursued had the strike not taken place. He said that the show wanted to dive into PTSD and his character’s previous stint in the military.
2. Lots Of Viewers Swore Off The Show After Sweets Died
Nobody was happy about Lance Sweets’ untimely death. Sweets’ portrayer, John Francis Daley, even admitted he would have liked to continue to his run on the show.
Daley had been given the opportunity to direct a movie, a personal dream come true, and had requested time off from the show in order to do it. He had intended to resume his role once his directing duties had been fulfilled, but execs chose to kill off his character instead.
Even creator Hart Hanson revealed that had he never stepped down as showrunner, Sweets’ death would never have happened.
Given how unpopular the shocking death plot proved to be, it’s no surprise that outraged fans totally swore off the show following the episode. Thankfully, since fans were so upset over the loss of their favorite character, Daley said that he received nothing but support and understanding in achieving his goals.
1. Trump Interrupted The Season 11 Finale
Was the season 11 finale of Bones good? Was it bad? Who knows– nobody actually saw it from the beginning. OK, that’s hyperbole, you’ve likely streamed it a dozen times by now, but any fans who actually trying to check in with Brennan and her crew were forced to wait the aforementioned three months (this was the season Fox put on a major hiatus).
Viewers were then forced to wait a solid 40 minutes as then-presidential nominee Donald Trump talked over nearly the entire episode during his nomination acceptance speech.
Trump’s 75-minute speech was a record-setter, but that didn’t matter to Emily Deschanel.
Deschanel was just angry that viewers would have been forced to jump in at the end of the episode with no clue as to what was actually going on in the story.
Can you think of any other dark secrets behind Bones? Let us know in the comments!
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