The long-awaited and highly anticipated third season of Twin Peaks seems to have hit so many bumps on the road it's almost hard to believe it’s made it to production. After David Lynch and Mark Frost stepped down from the project, fans and former cast members launched an appeal for his return. Eventually the co-creators agreed a deal with Showtime to double the original number of episodes planned to 18, with Lynch directing each one.
Shortly after that, the show hit another snag when it was announced that the series may not come to air until sometime in 2017. Filming has begun, though, and Lynch doesn’t seem too happy with how that’s going either - having pleaded with fans not to post spoiler-filled pictures of shooting locations online.
The third Twin Peaks series will be set twenty five years after season 2 aired on ABC, and will (we hope) give us answers to many questions which feature film Fire Walk With Me did not. We know that new cast members have been added; most notably Amanda Seyfried who joins in a multi-epsiode arc; though this being Twin Peaks, that is all anyone knows about her part in it.
We also know that Kyle MacLachlan will be reprising his starring role as Special Agent Dale Cooper. Furthermore, according to Showtime President David Nevins, speaking about the Twin Peaks revival at the Television Critics Association Press Tour back in August, viewers “Should be optimistic that the people that [they] want [back] will be there, and [that] there will be some surprises in addition.”
However, according to a report by TVLine, one actor is definitely not returning to his role. Michael Ontkean, who played Sheriff Harry S. Truman, has declined the offer to return to the show, with a source close to the show quoted as saying “Michael is fully retired from show business, and has been for many years.”
Furthermore, TVLine are also reporting that the actor has been replaced by Heroes and Last Man Standing cast member Robert Forster, though it is not known if he is playing a new Sheriff in town or stepping into the role of Truman. In a bizarre twist worthy of the mysterious and strange world of Twin Peaks, it transpires that Lynch originally wanted Forster to play the role of Sheriff Truman back before the TV show’s first season. He also directed the actor in Mulholland Drive, in 2001.
Forster joins Seyfried as a newbie on the Twin Peaks roster, along with Balthazar Getty (Brothers and Sisters), and Peter Sarsgaard (The Killing). So far, MacLachlan notwithstanding, no other original cast members are confirmed. Whether this will change in time or not, we don’t know, but it is fair to say that Lynch is doing everything in his power to keep as many details as possible under wraps.
The absence of Ontkean is something of a blow for fans. The character of Sheriff Truman was well-loved and often provided light comic relief from the drama which was very dark at times. The revival will also be missing another iconic character, after ‘Log Lady,’ Catherine E. Coulson passed away last month. She had been due to reprise her role for the third season. Regardless, fans will still be eager to devour the new series as soon as it comes to air.
Twin Peaks season 3 is expected to air on Showtime sometime in 2017.