Scott Wolf Cried Watching Party of Five Reruns: 'I Was Surprised at How Emotional It Made Me'
The actor played Bailey Salinger on the Fox series from 1994 to 2000
In this week’s issue of PEOPLE, the 51-year-old father of three opens up about his time on the show and the possibility of an original cast reboot.
“A few years back when Party of Five got picked up by Netflix, I hadn’t seen one in years,” says the actor, who currently stars on The CW’s Nancy Drew. “My mom videotaped every episode and I still have that box of tapes in my garage. I don’t even know where a VCR is. It had been years. I had seen blips on TV, but hadn’t actually sat down and watched an episode in years.”
One night, while he was in Albuquerque shooting The Night Shift, Wolf “put on Netflix and totally Party of Five rabbit-holed myself.”
“I don’t even know how long later … hours, I had tears dripping down my face,” he admits. “I totally binged. I didn’t do in order. I was just zipping around. It was like a family reunion. I was surprised at how emotional it still made me after all that time. I think that was the defining quality of that show. It did feel honest.”
The original series premiered in 1994 and followed the lives of the five Salinger siblings, whose parents were killed in a drunk driving accident. Starring Wolf, Neve Campbell, Lacey Chabert and Matthew Fox, it ended after six seasons in 2000.
An upcoming Freeform remake of the show will follow a different family, the Acostas, as they learn to cope with separation when their parents are suddenly deported back to Mexico
Though Wolf often wonders where his character Bailey would be now, he says he’s content with how the show concluded.
“My wife recently was like, ‘You guys should do a true reboot,'” he says. “I’m curious where all those folks are. When you play characters for that long, they become part of your life.”
Still, “I feel like we left the show in a really great place,” he adds. “People look back on it that were fans of it. I don’t think we need to open that box back up. I’ve joked that we could do ‘A Very Salinger Christmas’ and go to Hawaii, Brady Bunch-style.”
And while Wolf says he found a “family” in his former costars Fox, Campbell and Chabert, he’s most proud of his own party of five: his wife of fifteen years, Kelley Limp, and their three children (Jackson, 10, Miller, 6, and Lucy, 5).
“The role of being a parent is the role of my lifetime,” he says. “In every way, in the most important way, the thing that comes to the surface is the perspective it gives you on what the point of this whole thing is and what we really have versus what we think we might have.”
“There’s people who are living lives all kinds of different ways, there’s a billion profound ways to live a life,” he continues. “For me, I always knew that having kids was part of that. And to be doing it with my wife of fifteen years now, to do it with someone I love so much — it’s my favorite show to watch.”
“They’re just goofy and fun and sweet and kind,” he adds of his kids. “Even my work life has been affected by it. It just opened up parts of me that I couldn’t have done on my own.”