Episode 1.05 - Feb. 28, 2012
"Doctor Emmet Cole"
Episode 1.06 - March 6, 2012
Lee Tergesen plays Russ Landry in two episodes of "The River," a mid-season series for ABC that premiered Feb. 7, 2012.
Eight episodes have been produced for the first season of the show,
which focuses on a documentary crew searching the Amazon region for a
popular TV host and wildlife expert, Emmet Cole (actor Bruce
Greenwood). After Cole goes missing deep in the Amazon, his family,
friends and crew set out on a mysterious and deadly journey to find
Lee's first episode was "Peaches," airing on Feb. 28.
His character, Russ Landry, is the father of Lena Landry (actress Eloise Mumford). Russ is a longtime cameraman for Emmet Cole, and is
missing along with the rest of Cole's crew. Lena has accompanied the
search for Emmet Cole mainly to find her father.
"Peaches" is Russ' nickname for his daughter. We see him in
flashback, with Lena as a child. He is also shown on videotape,
having recorded a message for Lena. Another flashback is of Russ in
the more recent past, as he relates some of the strange occurrences
related to Emmet Cole as he travels deeper into the mysterious
The primary action for Russ is as a captive on board a ship
called The Exodus, which turns out to be something of a ghost ship.
Lee was briefly in a second episode, "Doctor Emmet Cole,"
which aired March 6. The search crew continues its trek and
discovers some of Emmet's belongings. They watch the tapes he
recorded, which include some footage of Emmet and Russ Landry having
a fight about whether to continue on a dangerous exploration. Landry
thinks Emmet has gone mad. Emmet, and two other crew members
proceed, leaving Russ on the boat.
The series is described as a paranormal/adventure/horror show. It has overtones of "Lost" and "Blair Witch Project" or "Paranormal
Activity." The latter makes sense because the director and
co-writer, Oren Peli, was the executive producer of "Paranormal
Activity." Other key production credits include Steven Spielberg and
showrunner Michael Green, a comic book writer who also has produced
and written for TV shows including "Heroes," "Smallville" and "Kings."
ABC won a heated bidding war for the project, and ordered the
script to pilot in February 2011 and then announced in May that it
would premiere in the 2011–12 mid-season. The pilot episode was
filmed in Puerto Rico, but the rest of the series was produced in
Hawaii, where Lee shot his scenes.