×

‘Silicon Valley’ Cast Talks Season Without T.J. Miller, #MeToo Influence

Silicon Valley’s” fifth season won’t just be the “most different season we’ve had so far,” as star Kumail Nanjiani teased, but will also address one of Hollywood’s biggest headlines — gender equality and the treatment of women.

While Nanjiani said the show wouldn’t directly address the #MeToo movement, he told Variety at PaleyFest in Los Angeles on Sunday, he said “there is a plot that goes over a couple of episodes later in the season that does talk about that movement, not directly, but what that movement is about is definitely tackled.”

Co-star Zach Woods added, “It’s hopefully not too on the nose, but that informs some of the plots in the middle of the season.”

The show, which centers around four guys creating a startup in the tech industry, has long been criticized for it’s lack of female characters and roles for women, which star Thomas Middleditch said was intended to mirror the gender breakdown of the real Silicon Valley. “The creators, their response has always been that their objective is to accurately portray it and that’s kind of what it is,” he said. “Hopefully that’s something that will change, but not something for the show to do.”

During the panel, the cast of the show, along with executive producers Mike Judge and Alec Berg, also discussed what may be Season 5’s biggest change, the absence of T.J. Miller’s Erlich Bachman, who was written off the show at the end of Season 4. Berg compared it to the difficulty of redirecting the show when Christopher Evan Welch, who played Peter Gregory, died in 2013 following Season 1 of the show.

“We had this central character that we were not going to have on the show anymore, so we had kind of been through it before, so we knew going in ‘Okay, this is a surmountable challenge. It’s not going to be fun, and it’s going to be difficult,'” Berg said during the panel. “Also, the Erlich character was getting harder and harder to write him into the show because he wasn’t someone who worked at the company, he was their past investor and their landlord and we started doing stories about how he was feeling marginalized and he wasn’t really one of the gang and what he was doing about that.”

'Silicon Valley' TV Show

The producer added that this issue was becoming even more pressing in Season 5, when the startup was moving out of Erlich’s house and into an office space. “It was at a point where it was going to be really hard to find an organic way to get the Erlich character into the show anyway, so from that standpoint it was kind of time. And then T.J., for a number of reasons, just decided that his time had come and gone and he wanted to move on, so we had the narrative challenge to keep him in the show and then it became ‘OK well, maybe it’s just time to not have him on the show,'” Berg said.

During the panel for the new season, which will follow the Pied Piper gang as they get their first taste of tech success, the cast also discussed Amanda Crew‘s role as one of the only women on the show, yet the decision for her not to have a romantic relationship with any of the male leads. Crew joked that before looking at new scripts she thinks ,”If there is a f—ing love scene I’m out.”

While there have been rumors that Season 5 will be “Silicon Valley’s” last, Judge hinted there could be more. “Looking at these episodes, it kind of takes on a new life, kind of a second wind,” he stated. “It could go on for a while, you never know.”

“Silicon Valley” season 5 premieres March 25 on HBO.

More TV

  • Michael Rooker

    Michael Rooker Joins Showtime Pilot 'The President Is Missing'

    Michael Rooker has been cast as a series regular in the Showtime drama pilot “The President Is Missing.” Rooker joins previously announced lead David Oyelowo and cast members Janet McTeer, Medina Senghore, Paul Adelstein, and Gina Gallego in the pilot, which is based on the novel of the same name by James Patterson and Bill [...]

  • Stella Baker The Republic of Sarah

    CW's 'Republic of Sarah' Pilot Casts Stella Baker in Lead Role

    Newcomer Stella Baker has been cast in the title role in The CW’s “The Republic of Sarah” pilot, Variety In the pilot, faced with the destruction of her town at the hands of a greedy mining company, rebellious high school teacher Sarah Cooper (Baker) utilizes an obscure cartographical loophole to declare independence. Now Sarah must [...]

  • Kelly Campbell - hulu

    Kelly Campbell Named Hulu President

    Hulu’s chief marketing officer Kelly Campbell has been promoted to president of Hulu, a move that comes in the wake of Randy Freer’s recent exit as CEO of the company. Changes have been afoot at Hulu internally, now that the streaming service is now fully under Disney’s operational control. Disney TV Studios’ Dana Walden now [...]

  • The Sleepers

    Berlinale Series Market Sets Spotlight on Central and Eastern Europe

    It boasts one of the fastest-growing TV industries on the planet, but that hasn’t cleared up misconceptions when it comes to Central and Eastern Europe. “I would like to kill some stereotypes about the region,” said Kamila Zlatušková, founder of the Serial Killer TV Festival in Brno, Czech Republic, during a showcase of regional series [...]

  • Pete Davidson

    Pete Davidson Thinks He 'Should Be Done' With 'SNL': 'They Think I'm F---ing Dumb'

    Pete Davidson’s time as a cast member on “Saturday Night Live” may be coming to an end, the comedian revealed as he discussed the future of his career in an interview with Charlamagne tha God on Monday. In a candid interview, Davidson was asked by “The Breakfast Club” host where he saw himself in five [...]

  • Miriam Haley and Tarale Wulff

    Women Who Testified in Harvey Weinstein Trial Slam His Lawyers for 'Victim Blaming' 

    Six women testified during the Harvey Weinstein rape trial, and now that the former movie mogul was found guilty of two felony charges, those women are speaking out with newfound freedom. Miriam Haley, who was assaulted by Weinstein in 2006, resulting in him being convicted of a criminal sex act (which carries a maximum sentence [...]

  • Mekai Curtis Curtis Jackson

    'Power' Prequel Series 'Raising Kanan' Casts Mekai Curtis in Lead Role

    “Power Book III: Raising Kanan” at Starz has found its lead actor. Mekai Curtis has been cast as a young Kanan Stark, the character played in the mothership series by Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson. He joins previously announced cast member Patina Miller, who will play Kanan’s mother. The young Kanan is described as smart, driven [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content