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October 9, 2015

Steven Weber replaces Dean Winters in ABC's Happy Town

by Jason Hughes, posted Jul 15th 2009 6:02PM
Steven WeberThat's got to be one of the worst things that can happen to a television actor. You get cast in a pilot. Things go well. Even better, the pilot gets picked up. You're going to series! Then you get the phone call. "We're recasting. It's not the series, it's you." And just like that, the show goes on without you.

Dean Winters is the latest victim, losing a lead role at that. ABC has cast Steven Weber in Happy Town, replacing Winters as John Haplin, one of the most powerful men in a town named after his family. It's an interesting replacement because Winters and Weber tend to put different spins on the same kind of guy. Weber can nail rich, powerful and important better than Winters, while the latter does intense and brooding, but much more street level.

As the mid-season series seems to be dabbling in some darker stuff, possibly even a murder mystery, I might find myself missing Winters grittiness, but Weber's surprised me with his emotional depth at times, so I'll leave the jury out. After all, these are TV people. They never get this stuff wrong, do they?

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Dang, that sucks. The only reason I had any interest in this Happy Town series was because Winters was cast in it. Now that he's out of the picture, I probably won't watch it at all.

October 12 2009 at 2:01 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Are you kidding me? Television people get it wrong all the time. Dean Winters is a wonderful actor. Shame on them for replacing him. He was great in Life on Mars. I can't imagine anyone else playing Vic Tyler. They just lost my respect that is for sure.

July 21 2009 at 7:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I love both actors, Dean Winters also played the brother who got killed on Rescue Me. Steven Weber was last seen on Brothers & Sisters & Desperate Housewives!

July 16 2009 at 10:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm a big fan of both of these actors. Winters has been all over the place recently (although most of his characters were killed off last season, along with the shows he was on). Has Weber done anything since Studio 60? I'm sure he has, but nothing that I can think of.

I hope to see a lot more of Winters on TV - he's been great in everything from Life on Mars to 30 Rock to Terminator SCC.

For whatever it's worth, if the character is a rich guy, I think I'm more used to Weber playing that part. He did a great job of it on Studio 60. I see Dean Winters as playing more of a middle-class everyman type, not a rich powerful guy. Of course I don't want to typecast anyone, and I don't think I've ever seen Winters play a rich/powerful character before so who knows.

I guess the bottom line is I can't blame them for their choice, but it sucks how they went about firing Winters.

July 15 2009 at 11:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Oh man, that's tough to hear. Dean Winters is absolutely fantastic. I hope he finds something good soon.

July 15 2009 at 10:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

NOBODY can replace The Beeper King!

July 15 2009 at 10:29 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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