Straight From Hollywood
JD Richter might be racing against time to try save the human race, but actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan already has his next TV role lined up.
Extant Season 2 Mondays M-Net Edge 19:00
Jeffrey Dean Morgan has had some iconic TV roles: from 2006 to 2009 as the tragic Denny in Grey’s Anatomy (2005- current), to Dean and Sam’s (Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki) dad John Winchester in sci-fi series Supernatural (2005- current) from 2005 to 2007, and most recently as Joe DiMaggio, Marilyn Monroe’s ex in The Secret Life Of Marilyn Monroe (2015) miniseries. But right now, he’s playing determined cop JD Richter in Extant (2014- current), who teams up with astronaut Molly Woods (Halle Berry) to save the world from aliens. What’s it like working with Halle Berry? When you’re working long days, you want somebody you can have fun with – and 99% of our scenes are together. We found great chemistry and had fun with as much of it as we could. We spend a lot of time laughing. My character comes in and it’s a different show than last year . It’s a reboot. Last year it was much more “sciencey”. More outer space. When I took the show, I asked to see their best four episodes and was told, ‘Don’t bother. It’s going to be a new show’. My character adds an edge. He’s the guy who can help the audience figure out what’s going on in the show. Hopefully my character can explain and dirty up the show a little. I have a tendency to dirty up any show I do [Laughs]. How would you react if a good-looking woman came up to you and said there are aliens out there? Probably like my character reacts. He thinks that Molly should be in a looney bin [Laughs]. It takes a bit of convincing and JD isn’t going to believe anything until he can see it with his own eyes. He doesn’t buy the idea of aliens initially.
Goran Višnjic played Molly’s husband John in season 1 but died in the first episode of season 2. Do you feel you’ve taken over his role? It was Goran’s story with Halle and for whatever reason, it didn’t pan out for the producers. My first day of working was the day they killed him off. We nodded at each other and shook each other’s hand. It was a little awkward, a passing of the torch. He moved to another series immediately, so I think it probably worked out for all parties. I think it’s rare that a show completely reinvents itself. Some parts are carried over… Molly’s still an astronaut…
What would it take to get you into space? Money. I’d love to do that. Richard Branson is trying to put this flight together. Something like that would be cool as heck. But I’m waiting ’til they work out the kinks [Laughs]. Let’s talk about The Good Wife (2009current). You just landed a big role in the
next season… I had a conversation with the Kings [Robert and Michelle, the show’s executive producers]. They were holidaying in Italy and I was shooting the Extant finale. I didn’t get phone reception in the house I was renting in LA, so I drove down the hill to a Starbucks and I was pacing behind it, talking to Robert on the phone while he pitched me the character. They said they wrote it with me in mind. It was another show I’d never watched. Now I’ve watched maybe a few episodes from seasons 1, 2 and 3 to get an idea and it’s a very good show. I know Julianna [Margulies, Good Wife’s Alicia]. She has a house near me in Upstate New York and I’ve known her for years. I’m playing an investigator in her new law firm. There could be a potential love interest…
Is it just one season? Right now it’s one. I sat on the offer for two or three weeks, but I’ve not seen a script.
Jeffrey with his lead co-star Halle Berry (as Molly Woods).