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‘The Leftovers’: 7 Unambiguous, Post-Finale Facts from Justin Theroux, Carrie Coon, and the Creators

Some cast members believe Nora, and some cast members do not. Plus, Justin Theroux gave his beard to a fan.

Justin Theroux and Carrie Coon'The Leftovers' TV show FYC Series Finale Screening, Panel, Los Angeles, USA - 04 June 2017

Justin Theroux and Carrie Coon at Sunday’s “The Leftovers” finale panel



“Well, you’re one for two.”

That’s how Jimmy Kimmel greeted “Lost” and “Leftovers” co-creator Damon Lindelof Sunday night, following a For Your Consideration screening of the series’ finale. Alluding to the mixed reaction to the “Lost” finale — as well as the overwhelmingly positive reception to “The Leftovers” ending, both inside and outside the room — Kimmel got a big laugh from the TV Academy members present.

And they didn’t end there.

“The Leftovers” cast and creators gathered at Paramount Studios for a finale screening and panel discussion, the latter of which was nearly as long as the 72-minute episode itself. Joining Lindelof and Kimmel on-stage were, (from left-to-right in the photo below) writer and executive producer Tom Spezialy, finale director and series EP Mimi Leder, writer, EP, and co-creator Tom Perrotta, Lindelof, Kimmel, Justin Theroux, Carrie Coon, Amy Brenneman, Scott Glenn, and Kevin Carroll.

READ MORE: ‘The Leftovers’: Damon Lindelof on the ‘Tremendous’ Debate Over the Finale’s Biggest Twist — ‘Everybody Was Depressed’

Tom Spezialy, Mimi Leder, Tom Perrotta, Damon Lindelof, Jimmy Kimmel, Justin Theroux, Carrie Coon, Amy Brenneman, Scott Glenn and Kevin Carroll'The Leftovers' TV show FYC Series Finale Screening, Panel, Los Angeles, USA - 04 June 2017

Jovial, warm, and excited to be able to speak openly about the secretive series, the cast and producers shared many stories from the three years spent making HBO’s (best) drama. Below, we’ve pulled together the highlights, including who believes Nora’s final story, who took what home from the set, and why there had to be so many dick jokes.

READ MORE: ‘The Leftovers’: Damon Lindelof on The Finale’s Two Endings and Why You Can Believe in Both

1. Amy Brenneman thinks Nora is lying in the series’ final scene.

Once the conversation shifted to audience questions, the topic on everyone’s mind after that finale came up quickly: Was Nora telling the truth?

“Do you think she was telling the truth?” Coon asked the man who posed the question.

“Uh…yeah,” he said.

Kimmel then polled the crowd and received a hefty portion of applause for those who do believe Nora’s story. No one on stage would commit to one side or the other — except Brenneman. She raised her hand when asked “Who doesn’t believe Nora?”

Theroux, for his part, noted that the show’s ambiguous perspective toward Nora’s story was reinforced by a formal choice: “It’s very telling there is no flashback during that monologue,” Theroux said.

“Yeah, because she’s making it up!” Brenneman said, garnering a big laugh from the crowd.

“That’s what you believe, Brenneman,” Coon said.

READ MORE: ‘The Leftovers’ Review: Carrie Coon and Justin Theroux Deliver The Ending We Need, and One of the Best Finales Ever

Tom Spezialy and Mimi Leder'The Leftovers' TV show FYC Series Finale Screening, Panel, Los Angeles, USA - 04 June 2017

2. No matter how fitting it might seem, Donald Trump could never lead the Guilty Remnant.

Noting how the series was different from many others, Kimmel asked the producers if there were any  “evil” characters on the show — “any bad guys.”

“I feel like that’s a trick question,” Spezialy said. “But to me, it’s a ‘no.’ As a writer, you have to empathize with all the characters.”

Lindelof noted that the most evil character from the onset was Patti, played by Ann Dowd. But her death on the show — her second death, really, during “International Assassin” — gave great empathy to the character.

“In the outside world, there are absolutely evil people,” Lindelof said.

“Any names come to mind?” Kimmel said, with a joke.

Lindelof tried to remain apolitical at first, noting how “people get into lots of trouble” for mentioning a certain someone in the United States government. But, without saying any names, Lindelof quickly noted, “He wouldn’t last in the Guilty Remnant for long because he couldn’t keep his fucking mouth shut.”

This remark elicited the night’s most rapturous response from the crowd.

Tom Spezialy, Carrie Coon and Scott Glenn'The Leftovers' TV show FYC Series Finale Screening, Arrivals, Los Angeles, USA - 04 June 2017

3. The cast definitely took some keepsakes from set.

When asked if the cast took home any keepsakes from set, a hushed silence fell over the panel. It was as if no one wanted to cop to stealing something in front of their bosses. Kevin Carroll tried to be diplomatic, saying no, he didn’t take anything. “But I wish I would’ve taken a kangaroo.”

Then Scott Glenn said that he was given a didgeridoo by Lindelof, which was fitting considering he was told to learn how to play one before the season began.

Theroux then said he was “sent” the portrait of President Garvey, seen in the seventh episode of Season 3, when Kevin assumes the role of “The Most Powerful Man in the World.” Brenneman said she took the lighter that Jill made for her character, Laurie, in Season 1, and that later came back into playing during Season 3.

Coon then noted how she wasn’t given anything, but then copped to stealing the bicycle Nora rides briefly in the first episode and then prominently throughout the series finale.

“If I’m going to be naked, I want that bike.” Coon said.

4. There will be dick jokes.

Given Kimmel and Theroux’s friendship, it was only a matter of time before the former drew attention to the latter’s most humorous theme from the series: the ongoing string of dick jokes in “The Leftovers.”

At first, Kimmel merely noted something he misinterpreted from the Season 3 premiere — or, we should say, he may have misinterpreted.

Later, the conversation shifted to the now famous “dick shelf.” Though Lindelof has previously told IndieWire of the many formal reasons that necessitated so many references to Justin Theroux’s penis, he provided a new reason for their prevalence in Episode 7.

READ MORE: ‘The Leftovers’ Longest Running Joke: A Timeline of Every Reference to Justin Theroux’s Penis

Tom Perrotta and Damon Lindelof'The Leftovers' TV show FYC Series Finale Screening, Panel, Los Angeles, USA - 04 June 2017

5. Peter Berg and an NPR D.J. deserve credit for the series’ outstanding music.

An audience member asked the team how series composer Max Richter came to be on the show, and Lindelof explained that Peter Berg found him on a whim.

“Peter Berg, who directed the pilot, went to go see a one-man show of ‘Macbeth’ with Alan Cumming in New York, and between the scene breaks they were playing this music,” Lindelof said. “And Pete said, ‘You gotta find out who wrote that.’ It turned out to be Max Richter, who’d done some movie work, but had never done television. He’s based alternately in Berlin and London, so we called him up and sent him the script for the pilot.”

He said yes, and the rest was history. As for the existing music that makes up the dynamite “Leftovers” soundtrack, Lindelof credited music supervisor Liza Richardson.

“Liza Richardson — that’s where it all begins,” Lindelof said. “She’s our excellent music supervisor. She’s a KCRW D.J., which makes us cool. She just compiles a list of amazing songs that she thinks should find a home in ‘The Leftovers,’ and we try to place them.”

“And then sometimes the editors will make a pick in the show, or there are other cases where we’ll just try all sorts of different things in the editing room until it sounds right.”

6. Justin Theroux gave his Season 3 beard trimmings to a random audience member.

After teasing a “special prize” before the last audience question, Theroux pulled a plastic bag out of his pocket filled with his beard trimmings.

“You’ve been selected to receive, in this zip-lock bag, Kevin’s beard from Season 3,” Theroux said.

7. Laurie is holding Jill’s baby during her only scene in the series finale.

In case there was any question if the baby Laurie was holding in the series finale was hers or Jill’s, her daughter, Brenneman cleared that up Monday morning via Twitter.

And, to go along with Brenneman’s kind confirmation above, here are a few more behind-the-scenes tidbits shared by the cast.


A post shared by Damon (@damonlindelof) on

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