It has been a stormy start to the next season of the critically acclaimed Discovery Channel series ‘The Deadliest Catch’, making news just about everyday, and throwing it’s fans into a tailspin. Discovery announced yesterday the return of the Cornelia Marie, as well as the late Captain Phil Harris’ two sons, Josh and Jake. According to Discovery, Josh and Jake will also be expanding their role on the series, participating more to hopefully gain enough experience to become captains. Josh and Jake, on their continued and expanded role on the series, “Our Dad made a tremendous connection with so many fans and it is such a fitting tribute to his life that we, his sons, can remain fishing on the boat that he skippered for so many years.”
The series, set to begin production in mid-October, also sees the return of Captain Derrick Ray, who stepped in as a relief skipper last winter following Captain Phil’s stroke.
‘Deadliest Catch’ has made headlines, and caused fan outrage recently with the departure of, and lawsuit filing against two of the shows stars, Andy and Johnathon Hilstrand. According to Discovery, production had been in progress for a one-time spin-off project called “Hillstranded” where the channel was following the brothers on their adventures is Alaska, work unrelated to their jobs as crab fisherman. Supposedly, the brothers bailed out, not finishing the project that they had signed on to complete. Discovery channel then sued the brothers for 3 million dollars, reporting that the project would have had big ratings, and the loss is substantial. Fans of the show came out angry, and in droves. Petitions were all around the internet, and letters to Discovery starting pouring in, prompting the Discovery Channel to make a statement on their Facebook page, letting the fans know they knew how upset they were, but asking them to be respectful in their posting in the FB sites comment section.
In the meantime, The Hollywood Reporter (THR) is now reporting that the Hilstrands may actually be returning to the show after all. It was previously reported that the lawsuit would cause them to sell their boats, and even Sig Hansen let Discovery know that he would not be returning next season in support of the brothers. The tides, however, may be changing. According to THR, the silence in the Discovery Press Releases about the return of the Cornelia Maria and Harris Brothers, with no mention of the Hilstrands and Hansen says a lot; that the trio may be in negotiations to return to the show. If so, the negotiations need to be done quickly, as filming begins next week, and the ships must sail on October 15th to take advantage of the King Crab season.
Will we see their return? Did Discovery Channel get the fans message? I guess we will know soon!