Lost 10th Anniversary Reunion
On Sept. 22, 2004, Oceanic Flight 815 crashed in the series premiere of Lost, changing the lives of not just those onboard, but also the millions of fans around the world. Nearly 10 years later, executive producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cusewere joined by various cast members during Sunday's PaleyFest panel to share some of their favorite memories and little-known facts from the show that changed the landscape of television:
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1. As many know, de facto leader Jack (Matthew Fox) was supposed to be killed off in the pilot — he would've been played by Michael Keaton, and Kate (Evangeline Lilly) would've been the hero — but ABC higher-ups said the audience would not bond with the characters and wouldn't trust the producers if they killed someone seemingly so central so soon.
2. Yunjin Kim and Jorge Garcia initially read for the roles of Kate and Sawyer (Josh Holloway), respectively, since Sun and Hurley didn't exist — there wasn't even a Lostscript yet. The writers then created the characters based on their auditions, and Jin (Daniel Dae Kim) was created so Sun would have a husband.
3. During the first season, Jorge Garcia was first told that Hurley was a repo man who was so nice that people would literally just give him their stuff back, but that changed by the time they got to the numbers episode, in which we learned that Hurley had won the lottery.
4. Locke's backstory was created because Terry O'Quinn would take breaks in between scenes down the beach listening to his iPod. "That guy has a secret," Lindelof recalls executive producer J.J. Abrams telling him. "You figure it out."
5. Ian Somerhalder was both the first actor cast and the first to be killed off. He learned about Boone's death roughly a month before it happened. Thankfully, he said, he was drinking Pinot at the time. Boone's death was a way to "defy the television convention" and "kill a character that was beloved" because then no one was safe, Cuse said.
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6. Kim said she knew she was safe once they revealed that Sun was pregnant. "They wouldn't kill a pregnant woman off the show," she joked. Though many character details were kept secret from the actors, Kim was told while shooting the pilot that Sun does understand English.
7. When Somerhalder and Maggie Grace, who played Boone's stepsister Shannon Rutherford, shot their kissing scene — "I made out with my sister once," Somerhalder said with a laugh — she jokingly had a marinade of minced garlic and cigar smoke in her mouth for the big moment.
8. The producers actually had the raft built that was used in the Season 1 finale, which turned out to be too fast for the camera boat to follow. When the guys — Daniel Dae Kim, Holloway and Harold Perrineau — were waiting on the boat in between scenes, they mooned Grace, who was still on the beach.
9. The Dharma Initiative and logo weren't created until Season 2, though people thought the logo made an appearance on the plane in the pilot. As for actual Easter Eggs, Cuse was proud of people finding the Dharma logo on the shark.
10. Even before fans turned on newcomers Nikki (Kiele Sanchez) and Paulo (Rodrigo Santoro), Cuse and Lindelof realized even they hated the characters. "We had a very elaborate story worked out for them which would span one season or more, but we condensed it into one episode where we buried them alive." Cuse said.
11. Lost fans were also very vocal when it came to the theories surrounding the show. Garcia said he once heard a theory that the characters were all cloned while on the plane and the series was about their clones on the island. "And Jorge was like, 'J.J. [Abrams], no,'" Lindelof joked.
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12. Lindelof said he refurbished the cover of the hatch, which was marked "quarantine," into a coffee table, while Cuse now has the countdown clock from the hatch. Garcia also stole two of Hurley's paintings from the mental institution. Kim, Grace and Henry Ian Cusick all took some costumes.
13. We never learned who was inside the outrigger that shot at the survivors in Season 5 — and it still wasn't revealed during the panel. "We actually wrote that scene," Lindelof said. "It was going to be in the final season and it perfectly answered who was on the outrigger in a perfectly satisfactory way. We all looked at it and said, this is a cool answer, but what's much cooler was to not answer this question."
14. Cuse once again set the record straight: The characters were not dead the entire time. They included shots of the plane at the end of the finale as a buffer before going into commercial, not to throw people for a loop. The idea for the sidesways/afterlife story line was created because the show was about people "lost in their lives," Cuse said. "The ending had to be a spiritual one."
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