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Holly Hunter interview for final season of TNT’s ‘Saving Grace’

holly-hunter-in-saving-grace“Saving Grace,” which begins its final nine -episode run Monday, couldn’t be saved. But the TNT drama is still getting an official sendoff.

The Atlanta-based network actually wanted to keep “Saving Grace” for a full fourth season. Unfortunately, Fox TV Studios, which produces “Grace,” deemed the show too expensive in relation to how much money they could get out of it.

As a compromise, TNT wrangled three more episodes to the original six it had planned to air over the winter. This allowed the writers to wrap up plot threads. TNT also moved the debut to March 29.

“I felt really proud we were able to do four seasons,” said Holly Hunter, the 52-year-old Conyers native who has garnered two Emmy nominations playing Grace. “It felt good to have an ending because that’s what I’m used to. That’s what I gravitate to. In storytelling, you always want an end. So many shows just get canned. The end to me is as important as the beginning.”

Hunter, an Oscar-winning film actress before “Saving Grace,” embraced the complexities and blatant flaws of Grace, a cop who drank too much, slept around and questioned God and her own existence. In the first episode, an angel Earl shows up and tries to nudge her in a more positive direction.

“She goes to extremities,” Hunter said. “She is ultimately a loner. She lives by her own code. She learns about her code and the shortcomings in it as her life progresses. You see Grace stumble and fall and be heroic and prevail.”

At the end of season three, she takes a literal leap of faith off a 12-story building with a lost soul named Neely. Grace should be dead but lands unscathed. The opening of Monday’s episode has Grace grappling with the aftermath and public exposure of her “specialness.”

“Being special is a burden,” Hunter said. “It’s great to see Grace really tackle the responsibility of being chosen. But what does that mean?”

Fans of “Saving Grace” appreciate the show’s ambiguities, its lack of a “Law & Order”-style template.

“Holly Hunter portrays a magnificently flawed human being with a tremendous amount of aplomb,” said Rob Stearns, a former Star 94 employee from Atlanta who has seen every episode.

Carolynn Segers, a 51-year-old St. Simons resident, began watching “Grace” for Hunter but stuck around for the storylines and plot twists. “They expose their characters’ vulnerabilities at the most unlikely turns,” she said. “I’ve learned not to pre-suppose anything with the show.”

On a less serious front, Segers appreciates Hunter’s genuine Southern accent – compared to Kyra Sedgwick’s honey-laden drawl on sister show “The Closer.”

Here’s a video promo interview with Hunter, who wasn’t afraid to show a little skin for her role:

And if you want to refresh yourself on the series, here’s a three-minute recap:

On TV
“Saving Grace,” TNT, final nine episodes start Monday, March 29, 10 p.m.

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10 comments Add your comment

iron_eagle

March 26th, 2010
4:22 pm

a series i have truly loved to watch
am disappointed only 9 episodes left

Dawg95

March 26th, 2010
4:46 pm

Awesome show! Really sucks that they canceled it.

sher

March 26th, 2010
5:21 pm

I can’t believe they canceled it. It’s one of the best on tv.Every time they get a show worth watching they cancel it. That’s why I don’t like watching series tv.

Laine

March 26th, 2010
5:52 pm

“Saving Grace” is ending this season? OH NO!! What if I promise to go to church . . . um, three times a year?

Alexandra

March 27th, 2010
2:39 pm

Love the show, and I’m very picky about what I watch. I read an article about Saving Grace and it said that it’s a typical cop show? What?? Are we watching the same show? Grace is so much better and so much different than the “typical cop show”. So upset it’s ending.

The Real Fan

March 28th, 2010
2:35 pm

Will miss my girl.
By the way the character in “Grace” is from Oklahoma, not a southern accent region.

Buffalo

March 29th, 2010
8:30 pm

HBO needs to PICK it up!

toni henderson

March 29th, 2010
11:31 pm

damn i am so disappointed like alot of the comments i am also picky and the previews of it season one i thought no i would never like it yet one minute in i was hooked. holly hunter is such a damn good actress i never appreciated her talent till this show. and earl always reminded me of angel from nash bridges i miss that too. what ever you do again holly i am waiting and i know it will be great. just don’t wait too long.

Queenie Borbon

March 30th, 2010
9:34 pm

It never fails … I start watching a series that I really like and then they cancel it …. why don’t they get rid of reality shows …

judy

April 12th, 2010
11:35 pm

i am not much of a tv watcher…most of what’s out there is junk…but saving grace really captured not only my attention but my heart and soul…why is it that whenever something really worth spending your time viewing gets cancelled. I am really disappointed and sad…i will surely miss this series.