The fourth season of “Barry” was a huge success, with critics raving about director Bill Hader’s shocking time jump and continued flexing of muscles. But if Larry David had gotten what he wanted, the fourth and final season would never have happened.
In a new appearance on the Conan O’Brien needs a friend podcast, Hader recalled a recent encounter with his former “Curb Your Enthusiasm” collaborator. As Hader relates, David thought the season 3 finale — which has Barry Berkman arrested as part of an undercover operation — was the end of the show.
“’That’s right, isn’t it?’” Hader recalled David telling him after the third season ended. “I said, ‘No, we have a whole new season. And he: ‘Why?’ I say, “Well, I think there’s another story to tell.” And he says, ‘But it’s done.’”
While David’s proposed ending point would likely have disappointed many “Barry” fans, it would have been thematically similar to how he chose to end “Seinfeld.” The iconic love-or-hate-it finale, which saw Jerry and his friends sent to prison for their lifelong refusal to be good Samaritans, continues to polarize fans to this day.
But while David may not agree with Hader’s decision to make a fourth season, he certainly knows how difficult it can be deciding when to end an HBO show. His long-running sitcom ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ flirts with the finale after nearly every season, to the point where he even filmed a character scene of him dying at the end of last season that was ultimately scrapped.
Many speculated that the upcoming season 12, which recently wrapped production and is expected to premiere later this year, would be the final bow for David’s fictional version of himself. But longtime producer Jeff Schaffer recently questioned these rumors and said no final decisions have been made.
“Reports of our disappearance have been greatly exaggerated,” he said. “Every season is the last season. It’s always been like this… Larry put all the ideas he likes into the season. He’s the only one who thinks he’ll never have another good idea. So, obviously, he’s done with it for a while. But you know, he usually goes out and has lively encounters with the west side of Los Angeles and then the ideas come.