"Lost" celebrated its 100th episode on Wednesday night with the death of a very important character – and producers Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof told TV Guide in a new interview that the death had launched the "the start of the final chapter of the entire series."
(SPOILER ALERT: Stop if you haven't seen the 100th episode!)
In the episode, Daniel Faraday – the time-travel expert physicist played by Jeremy Davies – returned to the island in 1977 from the Dharma Initiative's headquarters in Michigan. Thinking that he and the Oceanic 6 were "variables" who could change the future, he tried to track down his mother, Eloise Hawking – only to be shot by her in the Others' camp at the episode's conclusion.
"It was an incredibly painful thing to kill this beloved character," Carlton told TV Guide. "But we feel that's what this show has to do. His death is kind of the culminating event in the entire season. It really ends one chapter and commences the start of the final chapter of the entire series. Once we explained that to Jeremy, while he was personally saddened that his full-time status on 'Lost' was coming to an end, he put the story above his own personal self."
Damon seconded Carlton's emotions, adding that Jeremy had taken the news well.
"When Carlton and I called Jeremy to explain what was going to be happening with Faraday, we've never had a more awesome exit interview with somebody on the show," he said.
The character of the quirky scientist, who was introduced in Season 4, became a fan favorite, and the producers were quick to praise Jeremy's work on the show.
"For us, Faraday really was the cornerstone of the fifth season – he really shined," Damon said. "I can't imagine what Season 5 would have looked like without Jeremy Davies. When you think about all the crazy stuff that had to come out of that guy's mouth, for him to be as interesting and emotional and poetic as he was is really extraordinary."
He'll be missed by his castmates as well, though he may not be done with "Lost" – Carlton only said Jeremy's "full-time" status was over, and dead characters have been known to reappear on the show.
"[He was] a great sensitive guy who got deep into his character. He really lived it," Michael Emerson, who plays Ben Linus, told the mag.
And while his on-screen character was discouraged from playing piano by his disapproving mother, Jeremy had no problem bringing his tunes to the set.
"Most actors walk around with headphones, but Jeremy would walk around holding a miniature boom box," Terry O'Quinn, who plays John Locke, added. "He always wanted to provide music for everyone — whether they wanted it or not