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Christopher Gorham Reveals 'Harper's Island' Ending That Wasn't

'Harper's Island' concluded its 13-episode run this past Saturday with the revelation that Henry Dunn was one of the men behind the killing spree.

The twist surprised a few but the ending left many viewers unsatisfied with the journey.

However, Christopher Gorham, who played Henry, tells 'TV Guide' that the writers originally had an alternate ending in mind: "The ideal ending we couldn't shoot would be Henry getting away with it all."

"The plan worked. He and Abby end up together and Abby never knows. I think they were afraid that the CBS audience would not be happy with that. People wanted to see Abby have a happy ending with Jimmy."

Gorham also explains how he justified Henry's actions: "Henry is completely in love with Abby and has been since he was a kid. The problem is he finds out when he meets his father, John Wakefield, that Abby is his half-sister. Then the problem becomes 'How can I be with her?' as he becomes more and more obsessed. The only solution in his mind is to get rid of everyone who could possibly get in the way."

"So he comes up with this idea to throw this wedding and get everybody on the island. In the plot, Henry's supposed to be Wakefield’s pupil, but he changes course in the end and can't go through with killing Abby. The betrayal against his father was a planned betrayal all along."

"I had a decent idea it was going to be me from the beginning. But I didn't 'know know' until they told me right before episode eight. Storywise, it seemed to make the most sense to me."

"During the shooting of the first episode, producer Jon Turteltaub gave me a direction. We were shooting a scene with Henry and Abby and Turtle whispered in my ear, 'If Henry could, he would marry Abby in a heartbeat.' But then at the end of the shooting day, he said, 'But you’re not the killer.'"

"I thought it was really important to play completely in love with Trish and friend with Abby. I didn't want to play any attraction to Abby. If the audience sensed at all that Henry was in love with Abby, they would have turned on him."

"There was one thing I did though. At the beginning of episode nine, when Henry and Abby are standing over JD's body in the morgue, she comes and gives me a hug, and I let her hug me much longer than I would have had I not known I was the killer."

"I was completely in love with Abby and this whole plan was for her. My ultimate goal at the end was to have people feel sorry for the bad guy. You have loved him for so long and then hate him intensely when you find out what he's been doing."

"But then at the end to feel some remorse for how broken he is."

July 17, 2009 |

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