Be Warned: Spoilers for the series finale of Arrow are talked about beyond this point!
Arrow had a lot of stars return for its series finale. The plentiful turnout included a bevy of actors both past and present from the Arrow-verse. There was one star the show just about didn't get to have back for the momentous occasion. Arrow almost ended without a final appearance from Katrina Law, who played Ra’s al Ghul’s daughter, Nyssa al Ghul.
Cameos are never easy. They require a lot of planning, and as Arrow-verse executive producer Marc Guggenheim told TVLine, it is a complex undertaking. The actor has to be willing to return, and schedules have to allow for it to happen. Guggenheim credited Arrow showrunner Beth Schwartz with making all of the phone calls to necessitate the appearances made in the series finale.
When it came to getting Katrina Law back for Arrow’s series finale, it almost did not happen. Last year, Law joined the cast of CBS’ long-running reboot, Hawaii Five-0, for its tenth season in the role of Quinn Liu. Marc Guggenheim revealed the intense logistics that went into making Law’s appearance materialize, telling TVLine:
That being said, there were still actors we wanted who we just simply couldn’t get, because they were off shooting a television show, or shooting a movie. Katrina Law, for example, was shooting Hawaii Five-0 and we barely got her. In fact, she was landing at Vancouver airport, going through customs, while we were shooting the first half of the funeral scene.
Arrow managed to bring Katrina Law back before. However, getting Law to reprise her role as Nyssa for Arrow’s series finale undoubtedly brought another level of urgency to things. It is tough to imagine the stress that must have comprised getting it to happen! As you would probably expect, Marc Guggenheim has nothing but praise for the star.
Due to Katrina Law’s busy schedule, she was apparently not able to stick around long for the filming of Arrow’s series finale. The actress is now an integral part of Hawaii Five-0, which meant a literally quick cameo. Responding to the musing of Law having to get right back on a plane after filming Oliver’s funeral scene, Marc Guggenheim said:
Pretty much! Kudos to Katrina, as always, for being an incredible team player, but thanks, also, to the people of Hawaii Five-0. They worked with us and helped us out.
There you have it! Arrow fans have Hawaii Five-0’s crew for helping make Katrina Law’s appearance in the series finale happen. Thus, giving Nyssa the chance to pay her respects at Oliver’s funeral. He died early in the “Crisis” crossover. Her reappearance also meant closing a chapter on Law’s run on Arrow.
It is lovely that it worked out. I think it would have been strange for Nyssa to not have attended. Arrow’s showrunner did say that the series finale would offer a lot of “wish fulfillment.” You have to imagine that Katrina Law appearing was definitely near the top of countless fans’ wish lists.
Emily Bett Rickards and many other fan-favorites joined Katrina Law in returning for Arrow’s sendoff. Here is hoping that Arrow got to utilize Law as much as they initially envisioned. For understandable reasons, that did not happen with everyone. For instance, Arrow’s series finale initially involved seeing a lot more of Rickard's Felicity. As you can tell from Law’s situation, scheduling made that very tricky.
The Arrow-verse bore witness to a ton of cameos during its latest crossover. Getting the cast desired to return for the show that started everything had to be a gargantuan task. The team got creative in a way for the series finale’s opening scene, which meant the actors did not have to film new footage. Thankfully, Katrina Law was able to!