Showtime confirmed Thursday that any Dexter spin-off must involve star Michael C. Hall in an on-camera role.

“It would have to involve Michael,” said entertainment president David Nevins, echoing what Dexter showrunner Scott Buck previously told us. “I would only do it with Michael.”

Nevins was talking to a huddle of reporters at the Television Critics Association’s semi-annual press tour on Thursday and fielded several questions about the long-running drama, which came to a conclusion last year with a much-derided final season (that included — spoiler alert — Dexter Morgan exiling himself to an Oregon logging community).

Nevins defended the final season’s storyline, at least in the broad strokes, if not it’s execution. “I think the fundamental design of where they ended Dexter was really well conceived,” he said. “He had to sacrifice the one person who was closest to him in the world and he had to leave.”

One reporter asked about rumors that Showtime prevented producers from killing Dexter, a suggestion which the two top producers on the show have long denied since the concept for the finale was planned for years in advance. “It was never discussed the idea of killing him … no one even brought up the idea.”

Circling back to the idea of the spin-off, Nevins made it clear there is nothing currently planned. “It remains to be seen if they’re going to want to do it, if I’m going to want to do it. But they never felt like killing Dexter is the right end. I think that show is that character. If we were to do it, I would want to do Dexter in a new concept and configuration. I would want the show to feel different and not just be a continuation of the old show.”

“So it would be about lumberjacks then?” a reporter snarked, and Nevins said he wanted questions on a different topic.