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Anchoring the News

Jeff Daniels stars in the newest Aaron Sorkin show, “The Newsroom,” on HBO, a behind-the-scenes look at today's media world.
Marshall Fine
From the Print Edition:
Jeff Daniels-The Newsroom, July/August 2012

(continued from page 8)

Says Gandolfini: “The play was two hours and then you were done. With a series, you work all day, and then you go home and work some more, because you have to memorize crap for the next day. But it’s also incredibly fulfilling when the work is good. We talked about it before he took the show. After he started, he sent me an e-mail, saying, ‘I get it now.’ He waited a long time to do a series. And now he’s doing it in such a right way.”

For his part, Daniels says, “(The pilot) might be the best script I’ve read since The Purple Rose of Cairo. Aaron writes in a way that’s very exciting, very dangerous. He discovers it as he goes and HBO has given him the freedom to do that. One of the first things he said to me, after he asked whether I’d read the pilot, was, ‘Don’t worry—I’ll fix it.’ And it was great to start with.

“There’s a mental endurance you have to have to stay ahead of Aaron. You can’t have an off day or an episode where you feel like you don’t have to work so hard. I’ve been up and I’ve been down. This is up—creatively, it’s way up. I’m working hard because I don’t want my peers to look at this show and say, ‘I think I could have done it better.’

“Lanford Wilson used to say, ‘Make it matter. Make it count.’ And this show does. As Aaron said, each episode has to be the best yet.”

Contributing editor Marshall Fine writes about movies and entertainment on his website,

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