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USA Insider Monk

Tony Shaloub Talks Whether This is Really Mr. Monk’s Last Case: "Never Say Never"

Tony Shalhoub was delighted to return as Adrian Monk, but will he do it again?

By Stephanie Gomulka

With his personal hand sanitizer dispenser prepped and labeled, Adrian Monk is back on the case in Peacock’s upcoming movie, Mr. Monk's Last Case: A Monk Movie

Monk entered our lives during an era of appointment television. Each week, viewers joined the intuitive, private homicide detective as he quickly (and often chaotically) solved tough cases. Monk navigated not being able to solve his wife’s murder while also having obsessive compulsive disorder. 

Now, the character is set to return in the original movie Mr. Monk’s Last Case written by series creator and executive producer Andy Breckman

Emmy Award Winner Tony Shalhoub told USA Insider he was slightly reluctant at first to revisit the role.

RELATED: Mr. Monk's Last Case Plot Details Shared By Series Creator Ahead Of Peacock Premiere

“We ended on a such high note and I was concerned that we were, you know, maybe gonna undercut ourselves, but I feel like we raised the bar,” Shalhoub said of the new film. “We moved the needle. Certainly the other cast members, the whole ensemble were very, very into it and very enthusiastic while we were shooting. We all folded right back into it. We had a lot of laughs.”

Leland Stottlemeyer (Ted Levin) and Randall Disher (Jason Gray-Stanford) are set to return. Shalhoub describes shooting the film with former cast members as a “really warm” and “positive reunion."

Will There Be More Monk Coming in the Future?

Traylor Howard as Natalie Teeger, Tony Shalhoub as Adrian Monk, Ted Levine as Leland Stottlemeyer, and Jason Gray-Stanford as Randy Disher

The Peacock flick marks the return of Adrian Monk since the 2009 series finale and, although its title mentions it is his “last case,” it could still leave fans wondering if the door is open for more opportunities to dive back into the character. 

Any more possible storylines with Monk and his crew remains a question for the writer, according to Shalhoub. 

“I know Andy very well,” Shalhoub said. “We’ve worked together starting 20-odd years ago and just knowing his kind of ironic side, I have a feeling he was sort of throwing that out there as a bit of a tease, I think. I don’t know. I can’t be sure.”

Whether or not the series will be revisited again depends on a lot of factors, Shalhoub noted.

“I never say never,” Shalhoub said. “If another… great idea came along, who knows?”

Tony Shalhoub Shares Why He Returned to Adrian Monk

Key art for Mr. Monk's Last Case: A Monk Movie

There were discussions over the years about rebooting the show in different ways, but for one reason or another they weren’t pursued further, according to Shalhoub. Once the Covid-19 pandemic started, it sparked a “compelling reason to revisit the character.”

A jumping off point of the new movie was answering a question many Monk fans had: how would Monk fare through Covid and a pandemic? In addition to having OCD, Monk has several phobias. Chief among them being averse to germs, as the trailer to the movie points out.

RELATED: Tony Shalhoub on How Monk Navigated His Character’s Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

“Andy came up with a great idea, a great premise,” Shalhoub said. “We all jumped on board. The cast was enthusiastic.”

The movie follows Monk working a “very personal case involving his beloved stepdaughter Molly,” according to the film’s description

For longtime fans of the show hoping it keeps the same spirit, Shalhoub says he thinks the film succeeds in that regard. 

“I just kept saying listen, I want this to be the same,” Shalhoub said of the movie. “We were striving to keep it, you know, in the sphere of what we had established for all those eight seasons. The world has evolved, and so we needed to have a slightly fresh, slightly you know, slightly torqued kind of point of view and I really think we got that.”

Mr. Monk's Last Case: A Monk Movie premieres on December 8th on Peacock. Stream all eight seasons of the show now.

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