Debra Messing and Eric McCormack remember their time on set -- and a naked Sean Hayes

By Dan Snierson
October 15, 2010 at 12:00 PM EDT
  • TV Show

Where there was a Will, there was a Grace. From 1998 to 2006, a fastidious lawyer (he’s gay!) and his neurotic interior-designer roomie (she’s straight!) took platonic love to new levels on NBC’s hit sitcom Will & Grace. Four years later, we found ourselves still pining for the clever wordplay and rat-a-tat energy of Will (Eric McCormack) and Grace (Debra Messing), who navigated New York life aided by sassy sidekicks Jack (Sean Hayes) and Karen (Megan Mullally). But when we brought McCormack, 47, and Messing, 42, together for an anything-goes photo shoot, we weren’t exactly reuniting long-lost friends: The two stay in touch regularly. Just don’t hold your breath for one more W&G installment, as the finale already gave us a peek 25 years into the future. ”I don’t know how it would be possible,” says Messing, who went on to earn two Golden Globe nominations and an Emmy nod for her role on USA’s The Starter Wife. Adds McCormack, who starred on TNT’s Trust Me and is now developing a film adaptation of Linwood Barclay’s thriller No Time for Goodbye: ”I hope one day we get to sit on stools and look at outtakes and laugh, so that people in America can go, ‘God, how they’ve aged! They look awful!”’

EW When was the last time you two saw each other?

Debra Messing [To McCormack] It was for your birthday. We went out for lunch. [Turning to EW] That’s going to be a very boring answer for your interview because you probably want to hear that it was four years ago.

Eric McCormack Chateau Marmont.

DM Just the two of us.

EM There should have been paparazzi. Nothing. [Disappointedly shaking head] Nothing.

DM And it was to celebrate his birthday and yet he paid. How did that work? [To McCormack] Let’s do it again.

What’s your favorite moment from the show?

DM I still love the flashback episode of us back in the ’80s. We just looked so ridiculous with our bilevel haircuts and mullets. It was just so sweet to act out that moment when they were actually thinking that they were lovers.

EM I looked at an episode the other day where we spend the entire episode sitting on a therapist’s couch. And it was heaven. Because there was nothing to worry about — no cameras, no blocking. We simply just behaved.

What’s one secret from the Will & Grace set that can finally be told?

DM [Sean Hayes] ran naked through the parking lot as soon as we finished our three-hour conference on sexual harassment. They released us, and then he dropped his pants and just walked [whistling innocently] through the parking lot. It was probably the funniest thing I’ve ever seen in my life. To this day.

We caught a glimpse of the future in the finale, but where are Will and Grace today? What happened to them?

EM Murder, probably. I’m not going to say who would kill who.

DM Or maybe the four of us would open up a club in Vegas.

EM I like that. Or a doo-wop act that we’d take on the road.

DM We always wanted to do a musical episode, and it never happened.

EM It actually aggravates me. Because Scrubs did it and now How I Met Your Mother did it. And it’s like, c’mon!

DM [Stroking McCormack’s arm] It’s okay…

EM Why didn’t that happen?

DM [To EW] See, this is what I do. I’m the sugar, he’s the salt.

For more with Messing and McCormack, including their favorite guest stars and how Messing caught bronchitis from Grace’s fake boobs, go to

  • TV Show
  • 10
  • 218
  • 09/21/98
  • Max Mutchnick,
  • David Kohan
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