In Boston, Mary Steenburgen talked about her love for ‘Last Man’ — hours before its cancellation

Mary Steenburgen at the Ritz-Carlton promoting her new film, “Book Club.”

Fox broke a lot of hearts last week when it announced its long list of series cancellations.

“Lucifer,” “The Mick,” “The Exorcist,” “The Last Man on Earth,” and “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” were all cut from the network’s lineup. NBC wound up rescuing “Brooklyn,” but the other shows haven’t found homes.

Hours before Fox made the announcement, Mary Steenburgen — who’s in the ensemble cast of “Last Man” — was in town to promote her new movie, “Book Club.” During her interview with the Globe about the film, the actress wound up talking about her love for the sitcom, which followed a random group of people who find each other after surviving a plague that’s wiped out most of humanity.


Of her character, Gail — who spends many episodes drinking too much wine — Steenburgen said: “There’s one line in one episode where I reveal that I had a son that died, and Kristen Schaal’s character asks me, ‘Did he die of the virus?’ And I just say, ‘No.’ . . . I needed to know why Gail had to anesthetize herself beyond just ‘the world only has seven people left.’ And [the writers] did [that], and I love that we’ve never talked about it again, and that it’s her secret. And it’s very full in my mind exactly what happened to him, and to me, and all that. And . . . I love that [my character has] been married to a young woman — and that’s never really talked about in some preachy way either. It’s just . . . they care about each other.”

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Steenburgen also talked about playing accordion on the comedy, and how Gail brings out the instrument to plays covers at funerals. The actress said she didn’t learn accordion for the role; she already knew how to play.

“I said, ‘Oh, well I have my accordion in the back of my car’ . . . and they went, ‘You play an accordion?’ And I went, ‘Yes.’ And now every funeral I play my accordion. . . . I don’t know if you can call it a skill-set because I don’t play it very well, but I am very passionate. I play the accordion as well as I dance — with a lot of passion and not much expertise. So I’ve played tons of ’80s and ’90s rock songs on the accordion, which is almost impossible to do, I will tell you that. Try playing ‘Forever Young’ or ‘Sharp Dressed Man’ or ‘Love in an Elevator’ by Aerosmith on the accordion. It’s a niche.”