Spoiler Alert!: If you haven’t seen the latest episode of Will & Grace, turn back now!
You might have noticed there’s been no Rosario in the new episodes of Will & Grace. Shelley Morrison who played Rosario has retired (she’s 81!) so show’s writers contacted her and told her about their plans for the funeral before production started. Max Mutchnick, one of the show’s creators, told The Hollywood Reporter,
“We knew that we weren’t going to have Shelley anymore and so the character wasn’t going to be on the show. As writers, it just presented us with a situation that was too interesting to not explore and to write. To deal with Karen dealing with death and how that character would manage herself and how she would ultimately have a moment of truth in dealing with it — that was too rich of an area for us to not write to and so we went for it.”
But Rosario wasn’t the only cast member to get a sendoff, the show bid farewell to Debbie Reynolds who played Grace’s mother, Bobbi, on the series. The new episodes have featured a photo of Grace and Bobbi, but this is the first time that the cast has acknowledged her death. Grace consoles Karen with a heartfelt tale about her own mother’s death, but Karen ended up mourning Rosario in her own way. Mutchnick said.
“It was actually a very emotional night and it was something that we took very seriously. There was a hush on the stage the two times that Megan delivered her goodbye to her best friend. It was something that I will never forget and one of the best nights I’ve ever had on the stage of making this show. It was an incredible thing to witness and highly emotional.“
Minnie Driver also returned as Lorraine Finster in a scene with Karen trading insults as only they can. Below is also a clip from the original series at Stan’s funeral where Rosario learns that he has made her a rich woman…
(via Refinery 29)