In the closing moments of the Monarch premiere, Susan Sarandon’s portrayal of Dottie Cantrell Roman, the matriarch of the Roman family, died shockingly. Dottie wanted to die on her terms, so she killed herself the way she wanted. In the show’s very first episode, Melissa Hilfers didn’t hesitate to remove Susan’s character.
As for how the fox president reacted when he read the epic twist in the pilot script, Melissa told Hollywood Life exclusively that she has never hesitated with her decision. “The president of Fox says, “She is not dead, is she?” I replied, “Oh, she’s dead. I said, “Are we going to Game of Thrones, Dottie?” Because Monarch is known for its bold storytelling, this show wouldn’t do that. The show takes a lot of bold swings, Melissa said. It’s a swing, as you say, but it’s a big swing.
Dottie will appear in flashbacks again, according to the creator. The oldest daughter of Dottie, Nicky, was at her side at the end of the show as she took her last breath. The two sisters teased Melissa about the fallout of this moment for the two sisters when Gigi walked into the room after Dottie passed away and found Nicky clutching a bottle of pills next to the dead mother.
They also have this dare my moment, in which they both realize they may both want to be queen. That’s why it’s such a big deal,” Melissa explained. The fallout will be massive, and the sisters’ relationship, which they love so much that they would die for each other, will suffer a major setback. This episode explores when ambition and competition get in the way of an otherwise healthy relationship.
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Melissa told Hollywood Life that Nicky would “absolutely” seek out what her mother was trying to say in her final moments when she whispered something to her. She said Nicky would be “absolutely” on a mission to find out. Melissa told Hollywood Life, “I believe the audience will not be disappointed when they see what Dottie was desperate to say on her dying bed.”
She continued, he gets to know each of the kids differently because Dottie isn’t there. Albie’s relationship with each of the kids is going to grow. Even though she was this force of good in the family, she had everything just how she wanted it. Nobody could hear anything she did not want them to know. Many good and bad will be revealed to each of them, resulting in a deeper understanding of one another.”
The TV Critics Association summer press tour featured Trace Adkins’ cast discussion about Monarch, during which he stated he would love to see Blake Shelton play Albie’s brother. Melissa said, “I know how funny they are together. I know what great friends they are.” Monarch will now air on FOX on Tuesdays.