‘The Americans’ Finale: Cast and Creators Dig Deep for New Answers to the Series’ Wild Endings

IndieWire | 6/10/2018 | Staff
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The ending to “The Americans” is meant to invite questions; more to the point, it’s meant to invite the audience to provide answers themselves. The open-ended conclusion to so many stories in FX’s top-tier drama series are deliberate and fitting, as creator Joe Weisberg and co-showrunner Joel Fields purposefully crafted the series finale to provide emotional closure instead of hard-and-fast answers.

But that’s not going to stop people from asking.

ATX - Festival - Sunday - Afternoon - Cast

At the ATX Festival Sunday afternoon, the cast and creators gathered for a panel discussion about the finale. Keri Russell, Matthew Rhys, Noah Emmerich, Holly Taylor, Keidrich Sellati, Brandon J. Dirden, director and executive producer Chris Long, as well as the two men known around set as the J’s sat down and dug into the nitty gritty details of that pivotal last hour.

Below, are the highlights — including some intriguing clarifications and speculations made by the men and women who made the series — but be warned: Just because they think this is what happens (or happened), that doesn’t mean you have to, as well (especially if you prefer a happy ending).

Moderator - Hollywood - Reporter - Tim - Goodman

Moderator and Hollywood Reporter critic Tim Goodman asked Matthew Rhys straight-out if he felt Philip was happy to be back in Russia, and the Welsh actor gave an equally candid response.

“No,” Rhys said, sporting a scraggly beard and a long-sleeved denim shirt (an unseasonably warm — but very professional — look for the 97-degree day). “In Episode 1, Season 1, [Philip] said ‘Let’s defect.’ From that day, he knew there’s a very loud clock ticking on this one, and he’d like to save our children. He did like America. In regard to the children, it decimated him.”

Rhys - Russell - Writers - Philip - Elizabeth

Rhys, Russell, and the writers have spoken before about how brutal the ending was for Philip and Elizabeth when seen from a parent’s perspective. That...
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