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The Ausiello Files: May 15, 2009

EW’s TV scooper on ”Mad Men,” ”Bones,” and ”How I Met Your Mother”

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Mad Men back (at last): New baby, new stars
”It’s about how people respond to change,” says Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner of the third season of his Emmy-winning period piece, now in production for an August bow.

And luckily, one change we won’t have to respond to is a new showrunner for the series. In January, Weiner inked a two-year, reportedly seven-figure deal to continue going Mad. ”It was really an experience of business at a very high level,” he admits of the contentious negotiations. ”Everybody was worried about [what would happen], but we came to…a compromise. I didn’t want to leave, and I don’t think they wanted me to leave.”

Unfortunately, Weiner’s new deal did not come with a clause that brightened his dim view on spoilers. About all he’d admit is that season 3 will still be set in the ’60s, the entire cast will be back, and the baby that Betty (January Jones) learned she was carrying in October’s finale does, in fact, belong to Don (Jon Hamm). ”For some reason, there was some confusion about it because she was unfaithful,” he allows, ”but it’s Don’s baby.”

Weiner also copped to infusing some new blood into the cast, notably British actor Jared Harris (The Riches), though he wouldn’t say whether Harris is playing Sterling Cooper’s financial officer. ”I can’t confirm where he’s working,” Weiner says. ”The audience should have no expectations about what’s going to happen. There is no formula for the show, and that should hopefully keep it entertaining.” Some things never change.


Bones romance won’t be lethal
The upcoming sexcapades between Booth (David Boreanaz) and Brennan (Emily Deschanel) won’t break Bones, insists Deschanel. ”It’s done in a clever way so that it doesn’t dissipate the sexual tension and therefore ruin the show,” she says of their hyped hookup, which takes place in the May 14 season finale. And yes, the sex does take place. ”It’s not a hallucination [or] a dream,” she insists. ”But there’s definitely a twist, and it may or may not be related to Booth’s brain tumor.”

Mother of a twist has fans buzzing
Well played, How I Met Your Mother. The ending of the May 4 episode — which strongly hinted that Sarah Chalke’s Stella is the show’s eponymous mom — succeeded in both bringing Mother‘s central mystery back to the forefront and generating some serious buzz. ”We freaked out a ton of people,” concedes exec producer Carter Bays, who adds that although Ted’s baby mama won’t be ID’d until the series finale, the Stella piece of the puzzle will be solved this week. ”Everything will be made clear.”

Fringe benefit: Big spoiler below
Okay, Fringe producer Roberto Orci: Tell us something about the May 12 finale that nobody knows. ”Look for a very special gravestone,” he teases, ”and [take note] of whose name is on it.” Wow, that actually worked. Let’s see if I can get leading lady Anna Torv to elaborate. ”I can’t [talk] about the grave. But that’s a big [twist].” Eh, one out of two ain’t bad.

Additional reporting by Carrie Bell

{On the Web, there’s no such thing as a rerun. Get new Ausiello scoop daily at EW.com}