Glee won't have 30-year-old actors walking around the halls of McKinley High.
Series creator, Ryan Murphy, told Ryan Seacrest last week that several Gleeks will graduate in Season 3 and some new members of New Directions will be introduced in the fall and mid-season.
"I don’t think of it in terms of eliminating or replacing. Because I think the thing about this cast is people love them and they are incredibly talented. They’ve left sort of an indelible mark,” Murphy said during Seacrest's radio show. “The thing that I wanted to do and the cast wanted to do, we didn’t want to have a show where they were in high school for 8 years.We really wanted it to be true to that experience. We thought it would be really cool if we were true to the timeline.”
But exactly which characters will don the cap and gown is questionable, as the producers have strategically refrained from revealing the grades of most of the teens. Lea Michelle's character, Rachel Berry, will be heading into her senior year, since in Season 1 it was briefly mentioned that she was in the 10th grade.
Other possible graduates include Finn, Quinn and Puck. Brittany's age is unclear, but it would be very easy to keep the ditzy cheerleader around by saying she had to be left back a year. Kurt is most definitely younger than the rest of the Gleeks and should have two years of high school left.
So who will replace the original cast? Glee is finding some fresh faces through its summer reality series The Glee Project. The winner of the reality competition will receive a seven-episode gig on Season 3, which could potentially lead to a bigger role.
There is also the potential for Glee to bring back Sunshine Corazon (Charice) who has had a few brief appearance as a member of Vocal Adrenaline.
The show is also casting for two new female roles, one which is described as "Adele meets Susan Boyle." The other is a girl named Rebecca who is beautiful and can sing all types of music. It looks like these characters could replace Rachel and Quinn.
But how open will Glee fans be to this next generation? I can't help thinking about the failed attempt of Saved By The Bell: The New Class. Murphy, however, is convinced Glee can find success with its new class.
“This year we introduced two new people to success, Chord Overstreet and Darren Criss and those guys have done pretty well," Murphy said. "So, I think every year, which will be fun about the show is a new class comes in and this year I think we’re probably going to have a couple people who come in now and again in January.”
"I think the fun thing about the show is it’s a celebration of youth and talent and I think that just like with the original cast, I think finding those young unknown people and giving them an opportunity to break into the business and become stars is a really fun and exciting thing and is the spirit of the series," Murphy said.
While the kids may move on, Matthew Morrison and Jane Lynch, at least, will continue to teach at the school, both having signed six-year contracts.
Will you watch a new Glee cast?