Before the show premieres on FX on Tuesday, Sept. 4, check out what Sons of Anarchy cast and crew members have said about the Mayans M.C.
Fans hoping to see Charlie Hunnam reprise his role as Jax Teller already knew that the task was near-impossible, considering his death in the series finale in 2014, plus the fact that Mayans M.C. will take place several years in the future. But those still clinging to an idea of a flashback of sorts had their dreams dashed this week when Hunnam told Entertainment Tonight that he won't reprise his role.
“No, no… I had the deepest experience of my career coming out of that,” Hunnam explained of the Sons of Anarchy finale. “I had become that character, had become so deeply integrated into who I was, I literally didn’t realize until the day we wrapped and we put him to rest and I felt I went through a period of two or three weeks of, like, real bereavement.”
He even explained his emotional investment in Jax, calling him "sacred."
“I have his cut [leather vest] and, you know, people have been to my house and asked if they could try it on and I [say] ‘No one will ever put that cut on again’ and ‘We got to respect that dude. He’s not with us anymore,'" Hunnam said. "So I would never bring him back from the dead for something like that… It was seven years of my life. He sort of became sacred to me.”
SOA and Mayans creator Kurt Sutter has said a lot about his new project, but perhaps most important is when he explained his vision for Mayans M.C., explaining that he was not without reservations when it came to setting it in the same universe as SOA.
"There's always hesitations because you don't want it to suck," Sutter told Xfinity at San Diego Comic-Con last month. He said he brought in Elgin James, a former gang leader who established a music and film career after a stint in prison, to prove the show with another perspective.
"The idea of transitioning from one mythology to the next is my responsibility and bringing in Elgin to co-create it with me, to really allows it to have another voice other than my own, I think that allows it to be its own thing," Sutter explained. "So I'm not worried about so much about it ultimately feeling derivative or familiar."
KURT SUTTER (continued)
Those saddened by the fact that Hunnam doesn't want to reprise his role of Jax Teller will be happy to hear that Sutter does plan on bringing back some key SOA characters from time to time, including in the series premiere.
“It’s a flashback to eight years ago and a way of letting us know that he’s in Stockton where the two worlds will collide, at least in memory," Sutter said this month at the Television Critics press tour in Beverly Hills.
Katey Sagal's Gemma Teller will make an appearance in the premiere, while other characters who survived the grisly final season of SOA can also be expected to come back. But don't expect the Mayans to spend the series talking about Jax and Gemma.
"I don't want to mess with that mythology," Sutter said. "That mythology can live in imagination. But flashbacks wouldn't be stepping on what is happening now."
KURT SUTTER (continued)
Two other SOA characters Sutter is toying with bringing back? Jax's sons, Abel and Thomas, who would be 10 and 6 years old, respectively.
"I do think it would be interesting to see Jax's sons faced with the reality of who their father was," Sutter said at the press tour. "Jax basically said [to ex-wife Wendy], 'Do not paint my existence and my life in any glamorous way. Tell my sons that I'm a scum, and I'm a murderer, and they should have nothing to do with me,' because he didn't want them to face the same obstacles, the same draw to lineage that he had. To me, there's potentially something interesting to see how that may manifest. But that would be down the line."
Emilio Rivera, who played the president of the Mayans Oakland Charter president Marcus Alvarez in SOA, congratulated the cast of Mayans MC in January when it was announced the spinoff had been awarded a full season order. Although Rivera's character is not the president of the charter of the Southern California club the spinoff will follow, he is expected to appear in the new show.
In his congratulatory post, Rivera tagged Sutter, James and actors involved in Mayans MC, like JD Pardo (EZ Reyes), Clayton Gardens (Angel Reyes), Edward James Olmos (Felipe Reyes), Sarah Bolger (Emily Thomas), Michael Irby (Obispo "Bishop" Losa) and Richard Cabral (Johnny "Coco" Cruz).
"Season 1 coming at You real soon..." he wrote on Instagram at the time. Since then, he's been sharing regular updates, including series art, sneak peeks and trailers. He shared his excitement for the upcoming series at the ATX Television Festival in June.
“As much as I love my Sons of Anarchy brothers, the short time I’ve been with my Mayans brothers, I’m having the time of my life,” Rivera said at the panel. “One thing Kurt told me was on Sons, he hired actors to play badasses, and here he played badasses to be bikers.”
As Kim Coates, who played Tig Trager on SOA, reminded fans, Tig and Chibs Telford are the only two leads who survived the show — so it's unlikely any other stars would appear in Mayans. While fans shouldn't expect to see Coates in any upcoming episodes, however, he told Film Fad that he wishes the Mayans crew the best.
"[Sons of Anarchy] was magic in a bottle. There's no way you can recreate seething like that. But what I think Kurt Sutter and [Elgin James] are coming up with in this Latino world of the Mayans ... is that they're trying to create some magic in a bottle and I hope they find it. I'm a big fan of Kurt Sutter ... and Emilio Rivera, I love him," Coates said in March.
"All I know is I've moved on. We've all moved on. But the only two leads that survived Sons of Anarchy are myself and Tommy Flanagan (Chibs)," he continued. "So we'll leave it at that. That's all i know, I've left it in my rearview mirror, but I wish them all the luck in the world, I really do."
While Tommy Flanagan (Chibs) denied any involvement so far in Mayans M.C., he did send a cryptic tweet to an SOA superfan saying he would be on the spinoff series "by a radio."
When Flanagan responded to a fan via Twitter in August 2017 that he would not be on the spinoff show, another fan replied, saying that Flanagan "better" be on Mayans M.C. Flanagan responded, "By a radio" with a sly winking face, suggesting his name could be mentioned over the radio in a Mayans M.C. episode. The fan theory makes sense, considering that the show takes place in the same world as SOA, albeit a few years later, and that by the end of Sons of Anarchy, he had become the club's president.