Michael Sheen joins third season of CBS All Access drama
As “The Good Wife’s” spinoff moves into its third season, its title “The Good Fight” has more meaning than ever.
Not only does the current political climate in America test attorney Diane Lockhart (Christine Baranski) and her colleagues, so does another lawyer (new cast addition, and “Masters of Sex” alum, Michael Sheen) who is very much his own person – for better or worse – as the streaming CBS All Access drama resumes Thursday, March 14. Cush Jumbo, Rose Leslie, Audra McDonald, Delroy Lindo, Sarah Steele, Michael Boatman and Nyambi Nyambi also continue their roles.
Baranski gives credit to executive producers Robert and Michelle King for “how exciting it is to be in a show where we portray characters that are living in this moment in time, in history. It’s a brave move for writers to be in the belly of the beast at this time. And I think Rob and Michelle are always breathlessly reading the newspaper, thinking, ‘Oh, my gosh, what fresh hell is this I’m writing about?’ So, it’s exciting for us.”
Still, in frequently referencing political situations as they develop, Robert King allows that “We have a few backup plans if the world runs ahead of us, involving two or three pivotal scenes that we would have to reshoot. What you try to do is stay as close to the zeitgeist as possible, but it’s very difficult when you’re writing ahead. I think what we’re planning to do is find a way to use certain scenes that help update the audience to the way things are right now.”
Michelle King notes that “The Good Fight” is “far more political than we anticipated, because the world changed.” Indeed, Baranski explains, “The pilot was written on the assumption that Hillary Clinton would be president, and that Diane gives up her law practice saying, ‘There are no more glass ceilings.’ Well, you know, that was rewritten.”
As for the new actor on the “Good Fight” block, Sheen is enjoying portraying intended provocateur Roland Blum. “It’s nice to play a character where I don’t have to go through hair and makeup in the morning,” the actor muses. “I just turn up, and that’s what I look like. I feel a bit like I’m expressing the id of the show, in a way, and there’s something incredibly freeing and liberating about that.”
With the challenge posed to other characters by the fiercely independent and unconventional Blum, six-time Tony Award winner McDonald reports, “They have to question, or start to put aside, some of what they thought their morals were in order to achieve what they need to achieve. And that’s an interesting sort of trajectory to play, to grapple with.”