Paul Rudd is making his way to the Arconia. Only Murders in the Building has announced that Rudd is officially part of the season 3 cast after he made a surprise appearance in the season 2 finale. Learn more about Rudd’s character on Only Murders and how he came to join the cast.
[Spoiler alert: The following story contains spoilers for the Only Murders in the Building Season 2 finale.]
Who does Paul Rudd play on ‘Only Murders in the Building’?
Rudd only appears in the final few minutes of the Only Murders in the Building Season 2 finale, which premiered on Aug. 23. However, those few minutes set him up for a major role in season 3. He plays Ben Glenroy, a theater actor who stars in Oliver Putnam’s (Martin Short) new Broadway play. It’s finally opening night, one year after Bunny’s murder was solved.
Unfortunately, Ben doesn’t get along with his co-star, who just so happens to be Charles Savage (Steve Martin). After calling Charles a “f***bag” to Oliver, Ben heads behind the curtain to take his place. Charles appears next to Ben and wishes him good luck, but then warns Ben that “good luck” is a curse in the theater world. Then, things get really interesting as Charles says, “Be smart. Stay away from her. … I know what you did.” What on earth does that mean?
While sitting in the audience, Mabel (Selena Gomez) comments on how good the past year has gone without any murders. That’s a kiss of literal death, because Ben drops dead on the stage moments later. Yes, Paul Rudd’s Ben Glenroy has become the next victim on Only Murders in the Building.
How ‘Only Murders in the Building’ got Paul Rudd to make a cameo
In a recent interview with TVLine, Only Murders co-creator John Hoffman went behind the scenes on Rudd’s cameo. Apparently, he was the perfect choice to play Victim No. 3 given his history with the show’s three stars — Gomez, Short, and Martin. Rudd has a long friendship with Short, and he starred alongside Gomez in Netflix’s 2016 film, The Fundamentals of Caring. Meanwhile, Rudd is also a huge fan of Martin.
“He seemed like a logical person to go to with a ridiculous request, which was, ‘Can you come be in the last five minutes of season 2, potentially with an option to return [for] season 3?'” Hoffman said.
Rudd’s cameo was a complete surprise to most fans of Only Murders in the Building. The cast and crew kept it a secret as best they could, but they might have let it slip with a cast photo.
“We had a huge amount of the cast assembled in Bunny’s apartment [when] Paul came by to say hello, so I just said, ‘This is too good, let’s take a picture!’ So we took a picture, and then I was, like, ‘Oh, no!’ I think someone posted it somewhere,” Hoffman added. “Thank God nothing was given away in that picture, but it did get out a little bit. I think people started wondering, like, ‘Is Paul Rudd just visiting the set to see his friends?'”
Will Paul Rudd return for season 3?
The final scene of season 2 presumably sets up an investigation into Ben’s death in season 3. And it looks like Rudd will have a bigger role than just a dead body — according to Variety, he’s already been cast in season 3, although it’s not confirmed yet if his role is recurring, regular, or guest. Hulu announced season 3 of Only Murders back in July.
“Paul Rudd, after making an auspicious entrance into the world of our show at the end of season 2 as Ben Glenroy, is someone we clearly want to know more about and see in our upcoming season 3 — as he is a clear source of many upcoming questions and, as ever with our show, many twists yet to come!” Hoffman said in an official statement.
Of course, Hoffman couldn’t give away too much about Paul Rudd on Only Murders in the Building Season 3. However, he did tell TVLine that the script is so far “insane, so exciting” and “very twisty.”
“We try to check ourselves, like, ‘OK, what can we do and how can we do this differently?’ and ‘What feels like a different take? A fresh take?’ So I can only say hang tight!” Hoffman shared. “There’s a lot going on, and certainly the victim is colorfully drawn so far.”
Only Murders in the Building Seasons 1 and 2 are now streaming on Hulu.