The fate of late actor Luke Perry’s Riverdale character Fred Andrews will be revealed in its forthcoming fourth season, according to the show’s creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa.
Aguirre-Sacasa on Wednesday told The Hollywood Reporter that the storyline revolving around Andrews will ‘absolutely’ be completed next year following Perry’s March 4 death, which came about five days after he suffered a massive stroke at his Sherman Oaks, California home.
Andrews was out of town in the storyline, and Wednesday’s season finale did not move anything forward with the character, as Aguirre-Sacasa said he didn’t want to rush things.
‘When Luke passed, we had already broken and written a lot of the end of the season, and we really wanted to … I mean, it was just devastating,’ Aguirre-Sacasa said. ‘And we wanted to honor Luke, and figure out the best way to handle the character of Fred Andrews in the show, so we sort of said, “You know what? Let’s not squeeze, let’s not rush to squeeze something into the finale, or into the last couple of episodes, let’s really think about it, and let’s tell that story at the beginning of season four.”‘
Aguirre-Sacasa called Perry ‘one of the hearts of the show,’ and said that the dynamics of The CW’s Archie adaptation ‘always turned back to’ interactions between Fred and Archie Andrews (played by K.J. Apa).
‘Their relationship, and as crazy as things got … that was so wonderful to have, and so that was part of our thinking too,’ he said.
Aguirre-Sacasa said the show’s creative staff ‘wanted to take the time to understand how the show will change,’ in the wake of Perry’s passing, ‘and how we could best address that.’
Molly Ringwald, who plays Archie’s mother Mary on the program, came through for the show amid the difficult days following Perry’s passing.
‘I think she was actually even in Vancouver when we heard the news, or she was flying to Vancouver,’ Aguirre-Sacasa said. ‘And she said, “If you need me to stay longer I’ll stay longer,” and I said, “That would be great, Molly.” She did, and it really helped us.’
The role of Andrews was one of the last Perry played, in addition to his part in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, the forthcoming Quentin Tarantino film springing off of the Charles Manson murders.
Perry, best known for playing heartthrob Dylan McKay on Beverly Hills, 90210 in the 1990s, amassed credits on shows including Oz, John from Cincinnati and Body of Proof; in films such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, 8 Seconds and The Fifth Element.