Psych Season 7: Dulé Hill and EP Steve Franks Dish On Upcoming season

This season of Psych will have tons of surprises in store for all the Psych-Os out there and TV Equals was happy to listen to what the show’s creator, Steve Franks and actor Dulé Hill had to say about what’s coming up this season.

Franks’ cameo

One surprise out of the many that Psych-Os have to look forward to this season is Franks’ moment in front of the camera.

“I think the biggest surprise is that I think most people are going to love the most is my cameo this season for three and a half seconds,” said Franks. “So you’ll have to look for it, but I think that’s going to be really the thing that defines this season.”

“That’s going to be a very big, big, big surprise–Steve Franks showing up on our TV screens,” said Hill.

Other surprises

Of course, one of the things fans are going to want to learn more about is the fate of Henry (Corbin Bernsen), but Hill also said there will be a new addition to the Psych universe.
“I think people will be surprised finding out what happens to Henry. And I think people will be surprised with Anthony Michael Hall and who he plays and how he comes into our world,” he said. “I think that’ll be very surprising to people, as we start to finish out the Breakfast Club group.”

Franks discussed some more surprises fans can look forward to.

“I think there’s that and I think there’s a lot of – I think we have a lot of fun and we’re taking our character along this sort of their journey this year. And we’re sort of moving the story forward a lot more than we usually do,” he said. “And so I think there’s going to be some fun surprises with Lassiter (Timothy Omundson) as well and just in terms of the sort of level of difficulty some of these episodes are.”

“I mean, we’re doing a found footage episode that James direct that is entirely found footage for …just about the entire episode,” Franks added. “And the Clue episode…is so much fun. And it’s just a really fast, fun ride and it’s as giddy of an episode as we’ve ever done. So, you know, I think the drama will be surprising, the comedy should sort of walk up and slap you in the face a little bit, and I think there’s just a lot of good stuff in the episodes. And to me the biggest surprise is that after seven years of doing this that it still feels like it’s getting better.”

Fun at work

As Franks said, the show seems to be nowhere near slowing down. “[N]obody’s slowing down or getting tired of it. That we’re just discovering all sorts of great fun new things to do and, you know, we love getting up to Canada and doing this,” said Franks. “So, I mean, I don’t know any other shows that far into their run – going into eight years – can say that, but we’re happy to do this as long as they’ll let us.”

The Clue episode

The Clue episode, the 100th episode of Psych that was mentioned earlier is one of Hill’s favorite episodes this season, due to working with many of the Clue cast members like Lesley Ann Warren, Christopher Lloyd and Martin Mull, along with Garrett Morris and Steve Valentine.

“[I]t was a wonderful experience. I mean, being with that caliber… of actors with so much of the cast of Clue – who some hadn’t seen each other since they finished filming Clue…[T]hat was just the icing on the cake for all the wonderful guest stars we’ve had over the years. And to be at the 100th episode and have this group of people come together, it was an amazing experience and something that I will remember as an actor for the rest of my life. So I’m very thankful for it. So that probably blows everything out of the water for the season.”

The musical episode

The musical episode is another one that fans are excited to see. Franks said he started work on the episode at the beginning of the season.

“[F]rom the beginning of the season I tried to get a head start just so I could pull off the whole musical,” he said. And, you know… unfortunately I didn’t get to take time off for my regular job running the show. So I had to do both at the same time so we tried to get a running start with the episodes last year before we even got going. And then there was time for me to go into my office with my acoustic guitar and close the door and try to come up with the songs.”
“…[F]irst it was coming up with songs and the story. And from there it was getting to a script. And then…I sat down with Adam Cohen, our composer, and he turned these little acoustic guitar songs and ideas that I had into these marvelous orchestrations,” Franks continued. “And so… each step would have been overwhelming in each part but…I was just like, ‘Okay. This week I’m playing my acoustic guitar and I’m getting paid for it. This week I’m coming up with this episode.’”

Filming the musical

Franks also talked about the actual filming of the musical episode.

“… I think ultimately the most fun and probably the most difficult [part] was when we actually did it. Because in the end it … wasn’t like they shut the show down for two weeks so Dulé could rehearse and for James and Dulé to sit there and work out the dance numbers…[W]e finished an episode one day and the next day we were off shooting this musical,” he said. “…[W]e had a great choreographer in Paul Becker but a lot of times we were seeing the choreography the day of or maybe they would work on it the weekend before. And we would put it up on its feet on location there. So for me …there was this terrifying great unknown each day of ‘What’s this going to look like, you know, in the place we’re shooting it?’ And having to do adjustments and doing it on the fly. So it was wonderful and life-affirming to be done with it and I can’t say that I have had a better professional experience or a more tiring one.”

No directing for Hill

While James Roday has been in front of the camera as Shawn and behind the camera as a writer and director, Hill said fans shouldn’t be looking forward to him writing and directing episodes any time soon.

“I have some big news to drop on you right now: no,” he said when asked about possibly directing. “ … Roday, he is a filmmaker. You know, he’s a filmmaker and he loves writing scripts. That’s not really me. I mean I love acting, I enjoy bringing words to life and characters to life. So I don’t think – at least on the journey of Psych – I don’t think you’re going to see me hop behind the camera. There are way more talented people in that area that deserve to sit there instead of me being sitting there just because I’ve been one of the leads on the show for seven or eight seasons.”

Juliet and Shawn’s relationship

Franks said that Juliet (Maggie Lawson) and Shawn’s relationship this season will be hurtling toward revealing the secret that’s been a hang-up in their relationship.

“…I would like to think that they are meant for each other. But they do have a giant secret that has not been addressed. And we’ve been sort of creeping towards it,” said Franks. “And so even if it’s sometime in season eight or before that, at some point we have to address And I think there’ll be repercussions that come from that. But I think…it’s more fun to find out what happens. But remember our show is always a joyous, happy place. So, you know, nothing too awful ever happens to anyone.”

The Season Seven premiere of Psych airs on USA Wednesday, February 27 at 10/9c.