The tragic passing of Cory Monteith left Glee producers undecided on how to handle the character's storyline in the show. Glee's co-creator, Ryan Murphy, has announced that the current plan is to pay tribute to the late actor in the third episode of the upcoming season, which is due to air in the autumn.
"When you’re faced with something so sad and so shocking, what do you do?" said Ryan, speaking to The Hollywood Reporter. "Do we cancel the show? Do we start shooting in January? What do we do?
"Ultimately, we decided the best thing for everyone is to get back to work and be around people who knew him and loved him so that everyone can grieve together."
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Cory's girlfriend at the time of his death, Lea Michele, has told producers she will return to the show and declined the offer of quitting Glee, saying that it just wasn't an option.
The brunette beauty, alongside her fellow Glee co-stars, will put on a brave face as they film the special episode in memory of Cory. It was decided that his character, Finn Hudson, will not be recast.
"When we do the tribute episode to that character, we'll have to do it in a way where the cast members will not have to re-create feelings of grief that they've had this week, but do it in an upbeat way," said Ryan.
Lea, who dated Cory for two years, and her co-stars will not be expected to film the episode for some time while they are still grieving. The young star, 26, made a private visit to the Vancouver hotel where Cory was tragically found dead last weekend, following a heroin and alcohol overdose.
Lea hid behind a pair of dark sunglasses and was surrounded by five bodyguards as she paid her respects to her late co-star beau. The couple were reportedly discussing marriage before his unexpected passing, and had decided that Cory would move into Lea's Los Angeles home when he returned from Canada.
A statement was released on her behalf, thanking family, friends and fans for their support and updating them on her whereabouts.
"Lea is deeply grateful for all the love and support she's received from family, friends and fans," it read. "Since Cory's passing, Lea has been grieving alongside his family and making appropriate arrangements with them."
Cory was cremated earlier this week in a private ceremony in Canada, which Lea and her Glee co-stars attended.