We’ve heard for quite a while that Bones would be showing us Booth’s grandfather in episodes coming up. Originally, the show’s executive producer Hart Hanson had remarked that he would love to get someone like James Garner to play the role, but Garner’s health is not wonderful right now. (I hope his health improves!!)
But the great news is that TV Guide has let us know the identity of the actor who will create the character for us. He played the father on the long-running TV series The Waltons and his name is Ralph Waite. That’s a terrific choice! There’s even some tasing about another Booth family member coming to the show in the future. Here’s more about the selection:
After an exhaustive search (and months of me teasing this character in my column), Fox’s Bones has finally cast a grandfather (Or ‘Pops’) for David Boreanaz’s Seeley Booth. Hank Booth, a former army EMT, will be played by a Walton… specifically, Ralph Waite, who played patriarch John Walton on The Waltons from 1972-81.
Sounds like Ralph will need to be spry, considering his character will insist on accompanying his grandson out into the field to investigate “The Foot in the Foreclosure” on the Nov. 19 episode. “This is a really good murder,” promises Nathan. “All that’s left is ash and one foot, and Hank can’t help but tag along.”
The episode kicks off with Hank, recovering from a bypass, leaving a nursing home after getting into physical altercations with his male nurses. “He walks out and comes to live with Booth, whom he raised,” says Nathan. “They’ll try to rekindle the life they had for so many years, but you can never quite reclaim the past.”
We will also learn the reasons behind Booth’s abusive father abandoning his son at age 11, which David hopes will lead an NYPD Blue vet out of retirement. “I want Dennis Franz to play my dad,” David tells me. “He’d be perfect for Booth’s dad. I would love to make this happen.”
Nathan says Bones still plans to cast Booth’s father at a later date, adding, “You can’t introduce too many relatives at once.” [Source: TV Guide]