Anthony Edwards career information (contains some spoilers) : LUSENET : ER Discussions : One Thread

Edwards says he plans to leave 'ER' By DAVID BAUDER Associated Press LOS ANGELES (AP) -- NBC's "ER" will lose its most prominent doctor next year.

Anthony Edwards, who has portrayed Dr. Mark Green on television's top-rated series since its premiere in 1994, plans to leave after the 2001-2002 season when his current contract is up.

"I think that will be it," he said in an interview. "It's been eight years of my family working around my schedule. It's been a long time playing Dr. Green."

NBC is contractually committed to the series through at least the 2003-04 season. "ER" has survived -- even flourished -- despite the defections of George Clooney, Sherry Stringfield, Julianna Margulies and Kellie Martin from its ensemble cast.

Two other actors who were part of the original "ER" cast, Eriq La Salle and Noah Wyle, are also at the end of contracts next year.

A spokesman for La Salle said the actor had made no decision about his future beyond next year. Wyle's representative did not immediately return a call for comment.

Edwards, a four-time Emmy nominee, is arguably the show's lead actor. His character is struggling with brain cancer and recently traveled to New York City from its Chicago setting for experimental surgery.

"Tony is an integral part of 'ER' and has been essential to the success of the show," John Wells, the program's executive producer, said on Tuesday. "Though we would love to have him stay, we understand if he wants to move on and we will miss him greatly."

Edwards received a $1 million bonus with other cast members two years ago when Warner Bros. Television reached a new licensing deal with NBC. He said his departure was 99 percent certain and not an attempt to bolster his negotiating position on a new contract.

"If they want to talk to me about that, they should have talked to me a long time ago," he said. "I think they know."

His departure has nothing to do with dissatisfaction over the show or his role, he said. Instead, the father of three young children wants to spend more time with his family and working on a phenomenally successful TV series gives him that luxury.

"I'll be almost 40 when this is over," he said. "It will be almost 24 years since I started. I love to act, but to act every day for 10 months a year and not see your kids ... It's more of a family thing."

"ER," which airs Thursday nights at 10, has shown remarkable durability. It's the top-ranked show so far this television season, according to Nielsen Media Research, as it was during 1998-99, 1996-97 and 1995-96.

Edwards is a partner in a film production company, Aviator Films, with a movie premiering on Showtime this spring. He plans to spend more time producing and directing, with some occasional acting, and move from Southern California to the East Coast.

The hard-luck Dr. Mark Green has endured a divorce, separation from his daughter, a severe assault, the deaths of both parents and, finally, cancer.

Edwards said he would like to see his character exit the show "in flames."

The cancer would seem an obvious exit strategy, but there is plenty of time for writers and producers to think of other possibilities.

"There are a lot of El trains in Chicago," he joked. "You could trip in front of any one of them."

*You can locate this article at the Yahoo! Daily news section, it was originally published in the Associated Press. We all know that Tony will not renew his contract, that is almost inevitable. At least there is a glimmer of hope that he will not leave until his contract is up, that must count for something.*

-- Abby (, January 23, 2001


Response to 'Edwards Plans To Leave The "ER"'

I know. I just read about this an hour ago. I am not happy about it but it's his choice. As long as they don't killl his character I'll be okay with this.

-- Cammie (, January 23, 2001.

Response to 'Edwards Plans To Leave The "ER"'

Abby, you and I must have posted this at the same time. Yours is more descriptive though so Mike can delete my post if he wants too. This saddens me a little. I'll say this again though. If they kill him I'll never watch ER again.

-- Andie (, January 23, 2001.

Response to 'Edwards Plans To Leave The "ER"'

I'll miss Mark if (or when) he leaves. He, as a character, never quite keeps me enthralled, but he's like a permanent fixture in the ER-- the kind of thing you miss when it's not there. I hope they give him a happy ending, though... something positive.

I wonder, though, whether Alex Kingston will stay on? Maybe Mark gets a job elsewhere and they all leave? I hope Mark's storyline doesn't completely effect Elizabeth's.

-- samira (, January 23, 2001.

Response to 'Edwards Plans To Leave The "ER"'

Please don't put spoilers in the headers of your questions! The poster who wrote something like "Major news about Anthony Edwards" had the right idea. If we wanted a spoiler, we could go to her article. If we didn't, we could avoid it. Your header gave us no such option. Please be more considerate in the future. Thanks.

-- Khelos (, January 23, 2001.

Response to 'Edwards Plans To Leave The "ER"'

The last information I read on Alex, was that she was not ready to leave "ER" anytime soon. She felt she wanted her character, Elizabeth, to grow and be challenged a bit more. I think she wanted a lot more character development. From what I have read, Alex seems to be having quiet a little ball on "ER". So, I assume that if Anthony leaves, Alex will stay. I am not sure as to when her contract expires, although I do not think it is this season and or next season. It would be too unfair to go to Alex, saying, "Well, since Anthony is leaving, you must go too." I think that this opportunity will give Alex a chance to broaden her acting on "ER" and her plot lines. A single mother, surgeon...tough stuff. We will have to wait and see, though. It is all in the hands of the actors and TPTB.

-- Abby (, January 23, 2001.

Response to 'Edwards Plans To Leave The "ER"'

While I'm not happy with the idea of ER without Mark Greene, I completely respect Anthony Edward's decision. 2001-2002 is Season 8. If he doesn't leave before then, I am thinking that he won't, that he will stay on through season 8, then the show will be good. There are a few people, myself included, that think that ER should end after Season 8 instead of slowly losing all it's main characters and replacing them with other characters. If the show weren't to end, then I really hope Mark doesn't die. SPECULATION----------There are a lot of other ways to write him off the show and still keep Elizabeth besides his death. Maybe his going off "in flames" can be something like a promotion to a higher position at another Chicago hospital, which could be something that he never really thought he'd get or was capable of. That way, he can still be mentioned if need be, Elizabeth won't be a widow and single mother (since we've done the working single mother bit before) and a whole bunch of more emotional baggage won't be added to the show (even though it's what makes it good). That's just my $1.95.

-- Joanne (, January 23, 2001.

No, i wish this wasn't gonna happen. I had just put this picw of news behind me and it springs up again! Oh well. I do respect his decision even though i have only seen about 3/4 of a season and probaly won't see much more besides the rest of the eepy's left. It's weird. 3 years ago, no-one was probaly talking about the 'end' of ER and here it is, smack bang in our faces. If anyone at al can make coppies of tapes, AND lives in Australia, please email me! (I know this a lot to ask for, but there are too many complications with shipping, currency etc.)

-- Ritaann (er_aussie@hot,, January 23, 2001.

I've been thinking about this and I wonder if this will be a repeat pf last season. Rmember when 3 of them left in the same season. I hear things happen in 3's so who knows right? I hope if ELS leaves, he takes MM, aka Cleobot, with him. If Noah also leaves, well, then the show might as well end. I really don't think it can continue to do good without at least one of the original cast members. But that's JMO.

-- Cammie (, January 23, 2001.

Hey! I just realized that they didn't mention Gloria Rueben. She left ER and she was a great addition to the cast. What gives? They mentioned everyone but her. How rude!This story is everywhere now. I saw it over at just now.

-- Andie (, January 23, 2001.

Speaking of Gloria Rueben, does any one know what she's doing now? The last I heard she was in the Vagina Monolouges and this was back in August I think. I haven't heard anything new about her unlike JM and KM.

-- Cammie (, January 23, 2001.

I think they should have Mark leave for private practice or something to relieve stress of him. Since he has the cancer, it's not too logical to have him working in the emergency department of a county hospital where tragedies and surprises are happening by the minute. It would make more sense for someone in his condition to spend the remainder of his life in a calmer setting, but still being able to do what he has worked for his entire life. ER can make his exit a little more positive than Doug's being forced to resign for "killing" the Abbott boy.

-- Brad (, January 24, 2001.

Agreed that if AE leaves, Mark should go to another position rather than die. A couple of years ago Anspaugh said that Mark would get tenure (for teaching) in a couple of years, so that could happen soon. Mark is an excellent teacher (from the interactions we have seen with students etc.). Teaching would be less stressful than being an ER doctor, the hours would be more consistent, and he wouldn't have to worry about harming a patient if he had a problem because of his medical condition. He could go teach in a local med school, and we just wouldn't see him (unless he made a guest appearance). Elizabeth could just stay at County as a happily married mother.

-- Driad (, January 24, 2001.

Watch "Rosie O'Donnell" on Jan. 30th. Alex Kingston will be on the show. I bet since Rosie is a big fan of "ER" she'll probably ask Alex about this. Check your local listings for show times.

-- Cammie (, January 24, 2001.

Anspaugh did not say that Greene would get tenured. Anspaugh moved up the day that Greene would be first considered to get tenured. IF they are going to be realistic , then Mark would never be tenured because Mark simply does not meet the criteria of a Dr. who gets tenured. It has been stated and hinted at several times over the years that Mark does not like to do research. He does not like to get articles written in joornals. Research/journal articles are major criteria for getting tenured. In real life , rarely does a person get tenured without it. I think if they bring up the tenure issue , then Mark should be rejected as one for lack of research articles. We could see Mark decide to quit and go to another hospital.

I also think that if AK renews her contract and stays on until the end that they will either break up Greene/Corday or kill Greene off. Why should AK character not be left with any personal development if you tie her indefinatly to a character who is gone and won't be seen? If AK was a minor support character it would be one thing to let her have a husband in the background because we would never see any portion of her personal life. She would be just a background character at work. However, since she is a lead character it would not work out at all to have her married to Mark and for him not to be around unless it was only for a few until she left. I think if AK renews , they they will have to either break them up or have them kill Mark off.

-- brenda (, January 24, 2001.

Another reason they would kill him is ratings. I saw AITF last night on TNT (right after I heard about this no less) and I remember that it got big ratings. Since Mark has been here since the very beginning they know that they would get even bigger ratings for killing off yet another main character. I wonder if writing letters to TPTB asking them not to kill him off would work or not.

-- Andie (, January 24, 2001.

If Edwards wants to leave, they should kill Mark. Otherwise you get the same stupid situation that we had with Ross and Hathaway where one day they are soulmates and the next day he is gone and she stayed behind. It just didn't make sense. If they kill Mark, there is no reason for Elizabeth to leave. If he moves away, there is no reason for her to stay.

Oh, also, why do people think the show should cancel just because characters change? People come and people go. The trick is making those characters interesting. In the case of Weaver and Abby they have performed admirably. In the case of Cleo and Kovac, less so.

If you think the writing is bad, that would be a reason to cancel. If it is just because characters change, that is short-sighted.

-- Rusty Priske (, January 24, 2001.

How about some creative ways to kill Mark? The brain tumor would be too dull, and they did the El train with Gant. It's probably too much to hope that Cleo would murder him and be taken away to the Waldorf Hysteria (as they used to say on Barney Miller). Maybe an ice skating accident, or better yet, smothered by a red hat.

-- Driad (, January 24, 2001.

Personally, I don't think the show should be cancelled because of character changes. However, when it gets to the point where main characters are leaving each season, as it has been since the third season, things start to back up. The writers don't seem to be able to develop new characters quick enough to have the viewers really have the same emotional committment as to the characters that have been around for awhile. We still don't know a lot about Kerry and I almost consider her an original character. We don't know much about Romano, we know almost nothing about his life outside the hospital. We aren't learning about Dave very fast. Luka is still pretty foggy. Cleo is Cleo. Abby is almost being thrown upon us in the way that she stayed in the background for the most part last season, and is now receiving a lot of focus. I think the best new character development of the series was Elizabeth Corday, and even she isn't completely clear. If by chance Laura Innes, Eriq La Salle and Noah Wyle decide to leave by the end of Season 8 (and it can't be ruled out), what's going to be left? That's why I think that instead of pushing and dragging on to fulfill a contract, maybe they should end with high ratings, good stories and a strong cast of characters.

-- Joanne (, January 24, 2001.

I think that the cancer should return and have Mark either commit suicide or have a doctor assisted suicide. While I think that Mark would want to fight, it is clear that he have a difficult time coming to terms with the mental dejeneration that he could experience. Perhaps he could undergo another brain surgery only have the outcome be bad. I think they have to kill off Mark. I can't see Mark and Elizabeth breaking up, even if they do have problems because they have a child now. Besides TPTB should have learned from the Doug/Carol fiasco. Yes, the single mother thing has been done before, but not with someone who is very career oriented and has a lot of parent issues (because her parents were career oriented). I think it could give AK a great storyline. Trying to cope with being the mother that she wasn't, still trying to get ahead in her career, and having to deal with the death of her spouse. Sounds like ratings heaven to me :)

-- Emma (, January 24, 2001.

I think Emma's idea is an interesting one...A doctor assisted suicide with Elizabeth being that doctor. I have a hard time seeing that happening but that could be an interesting twist. I would rather they did not kill Mark off. I think ER will have a hard time surviving without AE even if NW and EL leave. I think AE is the backbone of the show. It will certainly be different. I am saddened to think that the series will not end with him leaving his ER shift like some of us discussed before. That would be the perfect ending!

-- amanda (, January 24, 2001.

I saw excerpts of this same article on Anyway, on that page it said : Edwards would rather go out "in flames" than let the writers have his character succumb to the terminal cancer. So if AE gets his way looks as though Mark Greene won't die from his cancer.

-- amanda (, January 25, 2001.

I just watched Dr. Green's last day in the ER. I thought it was very well done. Lots of drama and symbolisms. At first I was very disappointed that AE is leaving. But the drama of real life has people dying, leaving, being born, etc. I think AE should die a dignified death. AK will be come a stronger character, everyone will cheer her onward. I think that AK and Dr. Kovach would be a great pairing after a proper mourning period of course. They have both lost spouses, and Luca is hungry for a family life. He proved that when he spent so much time with JM and the twins. That leaves MT available for NW. And SS maybe just what calms and shows more of Dr. Romano's personal side. He is a valuable actor that is frequently forgotten. One of my fav episodes is when he operated on his dog! ER will change, I will still watch it.

-- Jo (, April 06, 2002.

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