Glee producers confirmed a tribute episode to late actor Cory Monteith.
The show’s creator Ryan Murphy told E! News that Monteith’s co-star and girlfriend Lea Michele decided the direction of the upcoming season, which after Monteith’s tribute episode will go on hiatus.
According to Murphy, the first two episodes will be a Beatles tribute that had been planned previously, and the third episode will pay tribute to Monteith and his character Finn Hudson.
Monteith was found dead in a Vancouver, Canada hotel room on 13 July. Hotel staff discovered Monteith’s body after he failed to check out on the scheduled day.
An autopsy revealed the 31-year-old actor died from heroine and alcohol overdose.
Murphy, who had made no comment on Monteith’s death until yesterday, said: ‘It’s hard to even explain how personally upsetting it is.’
‘[Lea] felt that the best thing for the cast and crew was to be together and to get back to work and be together every day and talk about our memories of him.’
Murphy added: ‘So we decided to do that with Lea’s blessing and we’re going to go back to work and have grief counselors on the set for two weeks because people are really hurting.’
Michele’s representative released a statement saying: ‘Lea is deeply grateful for all the love and support she’s received from family, friends and fans.’
Fans and Glee co-starts have been showing an outpouring of grief at the loss of the Glee actor. Co-star Jane Lynch paid an emotional tribute to Monteith this week during an appearance on NBC’s The Tonight Show.
She said: ‘He was one of those adventurous types of people. I always admired how he would get up… you know, he would fly to Mexico, he’d throw parties for his friends. I don’t think he left one day unlived. He was a real bright light in our family. We’ve lost a really great guy.’
Monteith had struggled with addiction since his teenage years, and had recently checked into rehab.
Murphy also said: ‘[Kieth’s] last words to me were, “I want to get better,” and I always felt and continue to feel even in his death that he did, that he really wanted to fight it and he was humiliated and shamed.’