Why Julianna Margulies Thought ‘The Morning Present’ Function As An LGBTQ Journalist Was Too Good To Go Up

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Why Julianna Margulies Thought ‘The Morning Present’ Function As An LGBTQ Journalist Was Too Good To Go Up
Why Julianna Margulies Thought ‘The Morning Present’ Function As An LGBTQ Journalist Was Too Good To Go Up



After a seven-year run on The Good Spouse, three-time Emmy winner Julianna Margulies is extra selective than ever about the place she lands. In becoming a member of The Morning Present as Laura Peterson, an anchor who, after being outed within the ’90s and shedding her place on the titular present, re-emerges as one of many nation’s prime journalists, Margulies says the chance to painting an LGBTQ character on the prime of her recreation was too good to cross up. Right here, she discusses her chemistry with on-screen love curiosity Reese Witherspoon, a powerplay with Jennifer Aniston and the sensation of portraying excessive confidence.

DEADLINE: You will be actually discerning when it comes to work at this level in your profession. What was it about The Morning Present that fulfilled your standards?

JULIANNA MARGULIES: One, I used to be already an enormous fan of the present. Two, I had by no means performed a personality like Laura Peterson. I assumed that she was so neatly written, and it was such a privilege to play an LGBTQ character that was so achieved and assured and had this unimaginable monitor historical past of success, but in addition had gone via the wringer herself in order that she might get to the place the place she wished to be. She’s actually enjoyable to play. Additionally, working with all people there. Mimi Leder occurs to be their government producer-slash-director, and she or he and I got here up on ER collectively. And the primary particular person to direct the primary episode I did was Lesli Linka Glatter, who not solely directed me on ER, but in addition on The Good Spouse. It actually felt like a protected setting to discover this type of a personality in the midst of a pandemic.

Julianna Margulies as Laura Peterson on The Morning Present.
Apple TV+
DEADLINE: What was particularly interesting about Laura Peterson?
MARGULIES: One of many issues that I discover so attention-grabbing about her is, it is a girl who actually has her life collectively. I’ve heard from quite a few individuals how a lot she means to them, in that they’re lastly seeing a personality on tv who’s LGBTQ and portrayed with such unimaginable confidence and smarts and is aware of the place she’s stepping into life. She’s not a caricature. What I’m interested by and what I’d like to discover extra is, how far in does she get with Bradley (Witherspoon)? The place is that line between sexual attraction and customary sense for Laura? Does she fall so head over heels in love with Bradley that she isn’t capable of convey herself again to who she is aware of? In creating that, I wish to know, who’re her mates, who’s guiding her? All of us have individuals in our lives and, in Season 2, you didn’t see that with Laura. You simply noticed her of their setting. I might like to see Laura in her setting with different LGBTQ mates, with different individuals. I wish to hear what they’re saying about this. And the place’s her household? Kerry Ehrin, when she created Laura, informed me that Laura was from a really well-educated, liberal New York household. When she got here out to them, her household was not accepting. I’d like to discover that, as a result of I feel it’s what so most of the LGBTQ neighborhood expertise.

DEADLINE: Did portraying somebody so collectively and confident affect you?
MARGULIES: It’s such a aid. (Laughs) One of many causes I really like performing is as a result of I really like placing on another person’s footwear. When the strains are written for you and the character’s there, I can unapologetically be that character, whereas while you’re your individual particular person in life, it’s a must to tread evenly. You don’t wish to come on too sturdy or too this or too that. Once I get to play a personality, all of that goes out the window and I simply can dive into who the character is on the web page and create her bodily. That, for me, is freedom. I discover a super quantity of freedom in performing, and it most likely stems from my childhood of at all times being within the improper outfit, the improper footwear, the improper nation and the improper accent. I by no means felt as collectively as Laura Peterson does, however I additionally know that she’s human. So as to not make her a caricature, I’d like to see a number of the sides of her which can be extra susceptible to issues that individuals won’t learn about and the way she would deal with that.
DEADLINE: There’s additionally a mentor high quality to her, which will be good, however in a relationship additionally fairly confining.
MARGULIES: Completely. I imply, you don’t at all times wish to be the mentor. Typically it’s good to have the ability to ask another person for his or her recommendation in a relationship. I do know that in my very own marriage, it’s such a give-and-take on a regular basis. What retains it balanced is that I do know I can ask my husband, “What do you consider this?” And no matter he says, I’m going to respect that reply. I don’t know with Bradley and Laura how a lot of Bradley’s recommendation Laura would take at face worth.
DEADLINE: And may one particular person tackle a mothering position with out beginning to really feel like a mum or dad?
MARGULIES: That’s the factor, proper? They at all times say, there’s flowers after which there’s gardeners, and that’s how individuals arrange a relationship. You’re the flower. You get watered on a regular basis. After which there’s the gardener who at all times takes care of you. I don’t assume that’s a wholesome relationship. I feel you each should be gardeners and also you each should be flowers at totally different instances so as to discover the yin-yang in a relationship. In any other case, it’s going to be one-sided, and I don’t understand how horny or enjoyable that’s after some time.

Julianna Margulies on the set of The Morning Present.
Apple TV+
DEADLINE: How did you and Reese go about growing this relationship? In your first scene collectively, the chemistry appears so apparent looking back, however I didn’t see the place that was going within the second.
MARGULIES: I don’t assume anybody did, particularly them. With Reese, it’s simple. She is aware of tips on how to play with different actors. I’m so grateful that it was her I received to do these scenes with, as a result of all of it is determined by your chemistry as human beings as properly. You may’t make that up. It’s both there or it’s not. And I feel Reese was very excited to see Bradley go in a unique course than she had been going. I additionally assume it’s essential that this character, who’s been guided by Alex (Aniston) and Cory (Billy Crudup), who all have ulterior motives, will get to see herself via another person’s eyes. I feel an enormous a part of what made the connection work within the second season was that Laura says, “They’re not utilizing you in the fitting manner, you’re greater than that.” I feel that’s a lightning bolt second for Bradley, as a result of she’s listening to it from somebody who she’s revered her entire life—presumably one of many causes she turned a journalist. So, for Bradley to listen to that from her, I feel it’s one of many largest moments in Season 2 for Bradley to maneuver ahead in who she is as an individual.
DEADLINE: Laura reveals us how far we’ve come when it comes to illustration and being open about who we’re, however when their relationship turns into public, it nonetheless upends Bradley’s life. What do you assume that arc says about how far—or not—we’ve are available in phrases public acceptance?
MARGULIES: I feel we haven’t come far sufficient, however I additionally assume we’ve come not less than far sufficient the place you received’t lose your job over it. I feel that’s what the entire present is about. It began out with the #MeToo motion and what was occurring to girls within the information setting behind the digicam. And I feel we’ve made many steps ahead and fairly just a few steps again. However I feel what additionally makes the present so scrumptious is that this fodder for gossip. One in every of my favourite scenes within the present is when Alex is available in and says, “Why don’t you want me?” And my character paints the image of what Alex’s response to her being homosexual did to her—and paints it in very broad strokes so the entire viewers can perceive that. I feel it brings consciousness to what idle gossip can do to somebody’s life. Hopefully, individuals watching that may look into their very own [actions]. I actually did after I learn the scene. I assumed, “Gosh, have I ever simply flippantly stated one thing only for gossip’s sake?” It makes you rather more conscious of how one thing that won’t really feel essential to you’ll be able to upend one other particular person’s life. Phrases have energy, and, stated within the improper manner, phrases can destroy. Particularly on the earth of social media, these 40-character sentences that persons are writing off the cuff, or as a result of they’re feeling indignant, these items have penalties.

DEADLINE: That scene can be the bookend to your arc with Jennifer. There’s the steely introduction of your character interviewing Alex, after which that final dialog the place the character of their relationship is illuminated. If you shot that first scene, I assume you knew why Laura is so cool in the direction of Alex.
MARGULIES: Sure. However, for me, essentially the most attention-grabbing half about capturing that scene is figuring out that it’s a favor she’s doing for Cory. She has spent the previous 20 years making an attempt to steer clear of Alex as a result of she’s not involved in hanging out along with her. It’s not a lot that Laura dislikes Alex. It’s that Alex has nothing to supply Laura, so Laura’s simply going to remain away. What I liked concerning the energy dynamic was that I feel Alex’s character has this entire concept of what Laura’s after, however—not less than I hope that is what the viewers noticed—I solely wished Laura to do her job, which is to get the reality. It’s all about Mitch (Steve Carell) and this e-book that’s popping out, and I don’t assume Laura actually cares a technique or one other whether or not Alex slept with Mitch. I feel what Laura cares about is the reality and the way that impacts each girl working within the information. And by doing that, it truly elevates Laura. Till Alex can simply say, “That is who I’m,” she will be able to’t be herself, and Laura already went via that. So, it was a really intelligent manner, I assumed, of the writers virtually mirroring what Laura went via 20 years earlier than when she was outed. There’s a freedom in saying, “Yeah, I’m homosexual. I’m not hiding. That is who I’m.” There was a freedom for Alex’s character on the finish to say, “Yeah, slept with Mitch. That is who I’m. Hearth me.” Proper there, out of the blue she’s free of those ridiculous, weighty lies.
DEADLINE: Enjoying a information reporter and a morning anchor, have been you channeling anybody?
MARGULIES: I attempted to make Laura her personal particular person.  Persons are instantly going to go to, “She’s a Diane Sawyer. She’s a Katie Couric.” I additionally felt that she had a whole lot of Christiane Amanpour in her as a result of when she received fired, she went again into fieldwork. She went again into the battle zones. She went again into scary locations and stated, “I’m a journalist at the start,” and I feel that’s her fact. Laura is precisely who she is due to the job she’s chosen. It takes a whole lot of guts to be on the sphere in the midst of a battle zone, risking your life to inform the reality. That’s additionally the silver lining of one thing horrible occurring, while you get outed towards your will after which fired for preferring girls to males. What it did for her was it introduced her again to herself and what she actually wished in life, and that was to be an actual journalist.

Learn the digital version of Deadline’s Emmy Drama journal right here.
DEADLINE: Internet hosting a morning present appears actually difficult. At one level, you’re going via dying toll stats for COVID and then you definitely’re singing a handwashing music. And it simply has to circulate.
MARGULIES: You need to promote all of it. Ultimately, you’re making an attempt to get individuals to tune into your community, so it’s a must to seem like you’re , and the one manner to do this is to have an interest. And I feel for Laura, it was enjoyable for her to go and do The Morning Present, as a result of initially, she’d been there, performed that, but in addition there was a lightness to it that she might get pleasure from.
DEADLINE: Laura and Bradley’s story was maybe a bit eclipsed by Covid and Mitch in the direction of the top. Is there extra in retailer for Season 3?
MARGULIES: I truthfully can inform you I don’t know. I hope so. I’ve not gotten a script but, so I can’t say something. And I’m certain even when I had gotten a script, I wouldn’t be allowed to say something. However I’m actually wanting ahead to seeing what they write for her.



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