“As written, Diane was [always] the grown-up in the room — fierce moral center, liberal feminist,” Christine Baranski says about the sophisticated lawyer character she’s now played for a decade thanks to seven years on “The Good Wife” and three (and counting) on “The Good Fight.” She continues, “You always had the sense that she was the sane one, that it mattered greatly that she would be the moral authority. I think it’s wonderful that this character has been on for as long as she has. There was a comfort level in Diane being Diane.” Watch our exclusive video interview with Baranski above or listen to the audio version below.
Baranski is no stranger to awards shows, winning an Emmy as Best Comedy Supporting Actress for “Cybill” (1995) and two Tonys as Best Play Featured Actress for “The Real Thing” (1984) and “Rumors” (1989). For her current role as Diane Lockhart, Baranski was nominated six consecutive times at the Emmys for “The Good Wife” as Best Drama Supporting Actress (2010-15) but now she’s competing up in the lead category for CBS All Access’ spinoff series. “It would be a great deal to me” to be nominated as Best Drama Actress, Baranski tells us, because “most of my career has been on stage, most of my character work has been comedic.”
She remarks that it’s “been a gift as an actor” to now experience “the longest period of time I’ve worked as an actor playing one character” in a drama series, since that’s not what she’s typically known for. Baranski adds, “I could easily have been Leonard’s mother for 12 years every week doing ‘The Big Bang Theory’ and that wouldn’t have stretched me as much or enriched as much as an actress. So to get a nomination, particularly in a lead role, that in and of itself would be quite wonderful.”
Looking ahead to Season 4 of “The Good Fight,” Baranski reveals the one storyline she most wants to see for her character. “I think Diane needs to have her Atticus Finch moment in court,” she says, referring to the passionate courtroom scenes from “To Kill a Mockingbird.” “She has to argue a case that brings the best of who she is — her greatest moment of eloquence and passion. I would love to see that, because court is a kind of theater, it’s like playing an audience. I would love to see Diane just hit it out of the park with some case that deserves to be won.”
Also in our exclusive video interview, Baranski chats about how Donald Trump‘s presidency helped changed the narrative of “The Good Fight,” whether she’s worried that the show’s political stories might offend certain audience members, what it’s like working with Michael Sheen as a “larger than life” new lawyer, and the big differences between airing on broadcast television and streaming online.
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