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Paul Rudd Set To Clash With Steve Martin In Only Murders In The Building Season 3 After Twisty Finale

Oliver, Charles and Mabel in Only Murders in the Building Season 2 finale
(Image credit: Hulu)

Spoilers below for anyone who hasn’t yet watched the entirety of Only Murders in the Building Season 2, so be warned!

When the smoke finally cleared at the end of Hulu’s Emmy darling Only Murders in the Building — and I do mean literal smoke, even if it was just from a theatre’s fog machine — Bunny Folger’s killer was revealed to be Adina Verson’s put-upon assistant Poppy. Fans had only just learned Poppy was actually Becky Barnes, the subject of who was herself revealed to be the subject of Cinda Canning’s podcast All Is Not OK in Oklahoma. It was wild and fun and all, but let’s not fool ourselves; the biggest shocker of the episode was MCU and Wet Hot American Summer vet Paul Rudd being killed off mere minutes after his surprising introduction. But we now know Rudd will indeed be back for the previously announced Season 3!

It’s not often that an actor’s casting announcement goes wide after audiences have witnessed the character’s death, but that’s how things have played out for Only Murders in the Building, with Paul Rudd’s Season 3 casting being made official by Variety. At this point, it’s not clear exactly how often the Ant-Man star will show up in the murder-mystery comedy’s third season, as he wasn’t officially noted as being either a series regular or a recurring cast member. But even if it didn’t amount to much more than his appearance in the Season 2 finale, it’d still be worth it, because who would be a better choice to play the rival of Steve Martin’s Charles than one of Hollywood’s most charm-oozing celebs?

Here’s how showrunner and co-creator John Hoffman explained things: 

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!

For not having too long of a debut scene within this topsy-turvy series, Paul Rudd rather quickly made his mark as the defensively arrogant actor Ben Glenroy, who is (or was) the star of Oliver’s big and promising return to directing Broadway. (And for what did not necessarily appear to be a Broadway-worthy project from its opening seconds, if I can be as judgy as Oliver is.) It’s then instantly affirmed that Ben and Charles apparently developed some kind of a rage-inducing rivalry in the year-long span that followed the arrests of Poppy/Becky and her aiding-and-abetting lover Detective Kreps. 

Ben Glenroy in trenchcoat on stage in Only Murders in the Building

(Image credit: Hulu)

As if it wasn’t already awesome seeing various Saturday Night Live legends like Tina Fey and her comedy inspiration Steve Martin sharing the screen — to say nothing of SCTV icon Andrea Martin — I cannot wait to see more of frequent SNL host Paul Rudd within this universe. Especially since he doesn’t look to be playing the stereotypical nice guy roles that he’s as known for as his agelessness. 

To that end, John Hoffman spoke to TVLine about having Rudd go against type for his Only Murders character, after previously considering having him play it closer to his actual personality, in the vein of Amy Schumer and other Season 2 newcomers

There was some consideration, and it was a fun thought. But it was also really enjoyable [not to go that route]. Paul is famous, not just for being some sort of hoarder of the fountain of youth, but also as one of the nicest guys in the business. The notion of him giving a “touch of a–hole” — the guy who everyone is having challenges with — was really fun. He plays it right on that line, and I just love what he’s doing. I can’t wait to see where we go with that.

Only Murders in the Building are available with a Hulu subscription, and fans will no doubt want to rewatch the second season to peep out any clues and hints that were missed along the way. While waiting for Season 3 to arrive presumably next year, head to our 2022 TV premiere schedule to see what new and returning shows will be around before then.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.