Glee's Cory Monteith tribute episode was "incredibly difficult" for the cast and crew and "very rough" for Lea Michele, says producer Ryan Murphy.
"People are still not over it. It is still really difficult," Murphy said Thursday. "I've never seen a crew that can't continue shooting because they left the room sobbing. ... What you're seeing is what they felt not just about Finn, but Cory."
The July death of the actor, 31, from a mixture of heroin and alcohol has been devastating for Michele, his on- and off-screen love.
"It was very rough," Murphy said of shooting the episode with Michele, 27. "It was very rough with Lea."
Murphy said the memorial episode – whose trailer shows the crying cast gathered around Finn's locker – is titled "The Quarterback," a role that Monteith embodied for the cast.
"The actors and creators really loved Cory … and Cory really was "The Quarterback" to that group of people," Murphy said at a Los Angeles screening of FOX's American Horror Story: Coven, which he also produces. "There was nobody on that crew that did not like Cory. … He was the most kind, the most generous, never a bad word for anybody."
Murphy called the shoot "tricky" and said there was "no right way" to do such an episode.
"I think the performances are quite stunning," said Murphy, who also wrote it. "Honestly, almost everything from that episode is from the first take – of every performance – because the actors and the crew had a really hard time shooting it. … But I am very proud."