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Is Harold Perrineau the 'Lost' holdout? [Update]

Harold Could Oceanic Flight 815 be missing a passenger when "Lost" returns next year?

With rumors rampant that Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof will be setting the clock back (at least temporarily) on "Lost" next season and bringing quite a few characters back from the dead, E! Online's Kristin Dos Santos is reporting that one of the ABC drama's former stars isn't too keen to return to the series, which wraps up its six-season run next spring.

Citing unnamed sources, Dos Santos reports that "offers went out to the original cast members several weeks ago, and this particular 'Lost' star decided to decline." So just who could the final holdout be? Let's take a look at the clues.

We already know that series regulars Matthew Fox, Evangeline Lilly, Josh Holloway, Jorge Garcia, Daniel Dae Kim, Yunjin Kim, Naveen Andrews and Terry O'Quinn will be returning for the final season of "Lost." It's been widely reported that Emilie de Ravin, who plays missing single mother Claire Littleton, will be back in some capacity this season. Dominic Monaghan appeared at the "Lost" panel at Comic-Con, so he's clearly on board.

Ian Somerhalder, currently filming the CW's "Vampire Diaries," has shot scenes in Hawaii, so Boone will definitely be making another appearance or two. Despite his massive growth spurt, Malcolm David Kelley has turned up several times on the series since Walt sailed into the sunset at the end of Season 2.

So who's left?

The process of elimination would therefore leave both Maggie Grace and Harold Perrineau as the likely suspects. Although Grace's participation has not been confirmed, the actress has made statements that strongly indicate Shannon will be returning next season.

The finger of suspicion therefore points most strongly to Perrineau, who was written out of the series seemingly for good at the end of Season 4, when his character, Michael Dawson, was seemingly blown to smithereens when the freighter exploded with him aboard.

Following the broadcast of the fourth season finale, Perrineau was quick to question the decision behind killing off Michael in an interview with TVGuide.com, where he accused Cuse and Lindelof of having a racial motivation. "Listen, if I'm being really candid, there are all these questions about how they respond to black people on the show," Perrineau said at the time. "Sayid gets to meet Nadia again, and Desmond and Penny hook up again, but a little black boy and his father hooking up, that wasn't interesting? Instead, Walt just winds up being another fatherless child. It plays into a really big, weird stereotype and, being a black person myself, that wasn't so interesting." (For their part, Cuse and Lindelof denied Perrineau's racial accusations, pointing to the diversity of the cast.)

As recently as last month, Perrineau said that he hadn't been asked to participate in Season 6 of "Lost," telling TV Guide Magazine, "Nobody’s said anything to me and I haven’t asked." He did however indicate that he would be likely to accept an offer to return to "Lost," if asked.

Although it's theoretically possible that "Lost" producers have made overtures to Perrineau in the weeks since that article ran, sources close to the production say Lindelof and Cuse had ended Michael's story at the end of Season 4 because they had no intention of bringing him back, even in flashbacks.

So is Perrineau the cast member that Dos Santos hints at? It seems more than likely, though there's no definitive proof that it's Michael who won't be boarding Oceanic Flight 815 this time around. 

Efforts to to confirm or deny Perrineau's participation in Season 6 of "Lost," via his publicists, went unanswered. We will continue to update this story as it develops.

[Update 1:03 p.m.: When contacted for comment, Perrineau's publicist said that she could "neither confirm nor deny" whether the actor will return for Season 6 of "Lost."]

-- Jace Lacob (follow my musings on television, food and more television on Twitter at @televisionary)

Photo credit: ABC

 
Comments () | Archives (10)

If it is Harold, I wouldn't blame him. They did his characters no favor with his last return.

Hopefully it's Harold. I really want to see Maggie come back as Shannon! I can't stand when people bring race into everything. Many people were killed and split up - and they weren't all black! Can't stand him!!!

I just thought his character was not that great, wouldn't miss him. Wouldn't really miss Shannon either. Walt was great though and some serious unanswered questions with him, so definitely hope we will see more of him! Maybe one reason a Michael flashback is not so compelling is that they can't flashback to Walt because he grew up.

Bringing race into this just ruins Perrineau for me. You just don't make such a massively damaging accusation like that without any basis.

Leave him out, I say. His character grew tired anyway.

Wow! It's 2009 and the best they can do is point to the diversity of the cast?!? Hey folks wake up! Screen time no longer equals diversity. How about some plot lines and good scripts / roles.
Just a thought.....

I'm sorry but I agree with Perrineau about the whole Walt and Michael thing. The writers didn't know what to do with those two characters and their storyline. Even though, I think the Walt aspect of it was the most interesting.
I find myself shaking my head and nodding at Chris's reply. Please don't point to the diversity of a cast as a way of saying it's alright with what you did to that storyline.

Sure, plenty of cast members died on that show. However, the fact remains those characters who were AA were taken out as if they were a part of a horror movie. None of them were left standing save for Walt. And because of his growth spurt and rather than recast the role or choose to use his new size to their advantage (they sort of did but at the last minute), they choose to focus on more annoying characters like Kate and Jack.

I'll give credit to the writers and producers of Lost for creating a unique diverse cast. They done something that few shows have done. But that's not good enough. Create storylines for them as well, ones that keep viewers riveted and talking about the show for days, months, and years to come.

Well as far as i have read it is probably going to be Cynthia Watros that won't be returning. they have offered her but she keeps saying no! (that is Libby by the way) Jorge Garcia who plays Hurley has said they will finish her story line probably but we most likely won't see her. I for one am mad at her because she needs to come back! who else is going to love hurley and he is so great! ugh! oh well i guess.

Tyler,

The original blind item that Kristin posted mentioned an "original" cast member of "Lost." Watros, having turned up in Season Two with the other Tailies, isn't an original cast member, so she's not a possible suspect and has long been outspoken about not returning to the series.

I would not miss Ms.Snooty butt shannon she just got on my absolute last nerve. She only had on slightly redemtive scene and after that she got shot .but i liked her better than boone aka mister wannabe hero and did everything out of selfishness because at the end of the day he wanted to be a Hero. however their has been one story i have been waiting for which is Michales all the mystery regaring his babymama ,his relationship with walt (a father who was wiling to so anything for the love of his son)was so powerful and i was waiting for the scence to see them reunite it would be cruel to the fans to not see that happen and i was also hoping to see a better redemtive scence of seeing him with the people he murdered but did because he was under the influence of the devilish Ben Linus. I hope that my proteges Lindlof and cuse do not make the mistake and take out on of my favorite characters michale dawson.

He returned. If you watch the Nightline coverage on it, Harold was seen with the cast standing on stage as Lost The Final Season film was playing in the background.


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