A familiar face is returning to ‘Roswell, New Mexico’ on March 19, as original series star Shiri Appleby stops by The CW series to direct a new episode, ‘Songs About Texas’.
After starring as Liz Parker in the original Roswell series, which aired on The WB and UPN for three seasons between 1999 and 2002, Shiri Appleby, 40, visited the set of the new CW series, Roswell, New Mexico, to direct an episode, and she told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY that she was “so excited” for the experience. “It was very full-circle. It was a really nice time to take a breath and reflect on all that I’ve done since Roswell — since we wrapped the original series. And when we did the [original] show, there was only one female director in the entire run [of the series] and to now be on the set running it — it just felt like… I’m so grateful to have had this opportunity,” Shiri said.
Shiri directed the March 19 episode, titled “Songs About Texas”, and according to a recent interview with our sister site, TVLine, showrunner Carina Adly MacKenzie said she wanted Shiri to direct this episode specifically because it played homage to an iconic scene from the original WB series. Upon mentioning that, Shiri wouldn’t spoil what the scene was, but she did say, “It was so funny because the episode was to be shot over Halloween, and I have two kids, and I was like, ‘Is there any way I could maybe direct another episode? I don’t want to miss Halloween with my kids.’ And they were saying, ‘She really wants you to direct [this episode].’ I was like, ‘Okay, understood.’ And after I finished reading the script, right away, I was like, ‘I am so grateful and so excited that this is the episode that I’m going to be directing’, because there was so much I could bring to it.”
The episode “mirrors the first series,” Shiri explained. “[Wiewers will] see Maria singing on a stage again and our Maria was always singing and performing, and there were [also] wonderful iconic relationships like Max and Liz and others that we really saw [in the original series], and [in the reboot], they get much deeper in their relationship [this week].”
As for how Shiri’s time on the original series impacted the way she directed the reboot’s ninth episode, she says, “There’s a little scene where Max is sitting and reading a book, and we come up to a space and I was like, ‘Oh, there was a wonderful shot in the pilot that David Nutter directed with me writing in my journal and it starts on the journal before it pans up on my face.’ I literally pulled it up off YouTube and showed it to the DT and to the camera operator. I was like, ‘Let’s do this shot.’ So there’s little things here and there that I was like, ‘Oh, I remember when we had this kind of moment, how can we pull that in?’ And, not that anyone would notice, but for me, it just felt so full-circle and I wanted to acknowledge that as much as possible.”
Shiri also tells us that she really enjoyed her time on set and hopes to return to direct future episodes if the series gets renewed for a second season. She even contemplated sticking herself in the background of one of the scenes she directed this time around, but instead, she decided to “keep things focused on the story at hand”. Maybe next time? One can only hope.
Since starring on the original Roswell series, Shiri has gone on to star in shows including Lifetime’s Unreal, The CW’s Life Unexpected, and HBO’s Girls. New episodes of Roswell, New Mexico air Tuesdays at 9pm on The CW!