9:48am PT by Kate Stanhope
'The Good Fight': Matthew Perry, Rita Wilson to Reprise Roles for 'Good Wife' Spinoff
A few more familiar faces from The Good Wife are coming back.
Matthew Perry, Rita Wilson, Denis O'Hare, John Benjamin Hickey, Jane Alexander and Michael Boatman are among the actors set to reprise their roles from the CBS drama on the upcoming The Good Fight spinoff, the creative team announced Monday at the Television Critics Association winter press tour.
"It's a wonderful revolving door," co-creator and co-showrunner Robert King told reporters.
The spinoff picks up one year after the events of the Good Wife finale, when an enormous financial scam has destroyed the reputation of a young lawyer, Maia Rindell (Game of Thrones' Rose Leslie), while simultaneously wiping out her mentor and godmother Diane’s savings. Forced out of Lockhart & Lee, Diane (Christine Baranski) and Maia join Lucca Quinn (Cush Jumbo) at one of Chicago’s preeminent law firms.
One face that likely won't pop back up, however, is Julianna Margulies in her two-time Emmy-winning role of Alicia Florrick. "We talked to Julianna about the show and her relationship with it and we agreed that kind of The Good Wife ended that story. It would be weird to see her come in pushing a garbage can in the background," King said.
Added co-creator and co-showrunner Michelle King: "You see our issues right here. Look at our amazing cast. We have 10 episodes to tell these stories. That's where we want to focus."
In addition to the shorter season order for The Good Fight, the spinoff will also air on a new platform — CBS All Access — after debuting on CBS on Feb. 19. The same day the first episode airs on broadcast, CBS All Access will unveil the first two episodes of the series, with subsequent episodes rolling out weekly.
Because of the new platform, the Kings teased more swearing in The Good Fight. "You're not going to hear them sound drastically different, but they're going to use the swear words you would expect," Michelle said, such as in the official trailer for the new series, released Monday, that shows Diane using a particular four-letter word when she learns her all of her retirement savings have been wiped out by the financial scam.
"This is the Kings unplugged," Baranski said with a laugh.
But like the original series, The Good Fight will also tackle politics, particularly in light of Donald Trump winning the presidential election and defeating Hillary Clinton.
"We were all in freefall. The interesting thing is you have a lead character who is in a... freefall in a similar way to what the country is feeling right now," Baranski said about Diane's struggle going forward. "How do you take the next step up when there is no foundation?"
Although the Kings began writing the pilot before Trump was elected, they quickly embraced the surprising outcome of the election. "The show has always tried to be fairly even-handed. The Good Wife was a satire of the sort of liberal mindset because Chicago is such a liberal town," Robert said. "I think one of the things we're looking at the in The Good Fight is how the environment has changed."
The Kings said the difference in the political environment is another element that will help The Good Fight set itself apart from The Good Wife. '"This gives shape to a new show," he said.
Just as Diane must find new resolve onscreen in the face of the financial scam and the fall of one of her political icons, Baranski hopes the show helps viewers find new resolve offscreen.
"The Good Fight is about the passing of power from one generation to another in terms of female power," Baranski said. "I'm hoping that the show has a really positive message about women having to continue the good fight."
Watch the official trailer below. The Good Fight premieres Feb. 19 on CBS and CBS All Access.