Jerry Orbach Restores Order To N.Y.
By Charlie Mason (TV Guide Online)
February 6, 2002

After a decade on the mean streets of Manhattan, many a police officer are ready to pack it in. However, JerryOrbach, who has played dry-witted Det. Lennie Briscoe on Law & Order since 1992, has no intention of turning in his badge and retiring.

"It may sound a little off the wall to say this, but having the opportunity to do this in this long an arc has given me - and is continuing to give me - a feeling that I'm doing something for the city and for the people of it and for the cops," the 66-year-old Bronx native says. "I see it every day on the street - the profile of Law & Order has gotten bigger and bigger. And the way the city feels about us [cast members]... it's like we're part of the good things that happen in the city."

In the wake of the Twin Towers tragedy, Orbach believes that his small-screen crime-fighting is an especially big deal. If Gothamites must see Osama's scary mug on the tube, then by God, Orbach is going to make sure that they continue to see his reassuring face as well. "I can't go down and physically remove I-beams from the rubble of 9/11, but I get a sense that [my colleagues and I are] helping in some way by the image that we're projecting," he explains. "It's the old line of the cops saying to me, 'Keep making us look good.'

"As long as we continue to do that," he concludes, "it's a joy to go to work."



Angie Harmon Interview
By Michael Ausiello  (TV Guide Online)
January 18, 2002

In just its first four weeks, 2002 has given us a great deal for which we can be thankful. Those pesky Taliban forces have been defeated. More than ever, it seems like someone is going to pay for that Enron debacle. And, right up there with the greatest of our blessings, Angie Harmon once Sam Waterston's most beloved Law & Order sidekick, ball-buster Abbie Carmichael is back on television, appearing as an unsuspecting home-movie star in Lifetime's fact-based drama, Video Voyeur: The Susan Wilson Story. What on God's green Earth took the actress eight long months to return to work? "I got married and went on my honeymoon, and I wanted to give those events the amount of time they [deserve]," the bride of New York Giants heartthrob Jason Sehorn explains. "It was the time of my life. I don't regret a single thing." We're glad she had fun and all, but since we missed her so much, she's going to have to make it up to us in some way. Hey, here's an idea: How about reclaiming her old L&O role before the year is through Michael Ausiello

TVGO: Why did you pick Video Voyeur as your so-called comeback?

Harmon: When they offered it to me, [Jason and I] had just gone through dealing with our wedding [pictures] being published in the National Enquirer. And it just struck a chord. It was just something that I felt I wanted to do and needed to do.

TVGO: And Susan Wilson couldn't be more different from Abbie Carmichael...

Harmon. Yeah. I actually smiled in this.

TVGO: Susan Wilson, like you, is from the South. Was it a relief not to have to hide your drawl like you seemed to do on L&O?

Harmon: It's something that I don't really notice. With L&O, I 
never noticed that I wasn't doing [the accent] until people 
pointed it out. And then when I got to The Susan Wilson Story, obviously being set in Louisiana, a bit of the accent has to come out. And it's funny, now that I'm off L&O, I find that my accent is much more prominent in my daily life as I'm sure you can probably hear.

TVGO: It must have been strange doing those love scenes in Video Voyeur after so many years of celibacy on L&O.

Harmon: Yes! Oh please, it was. Dale [Midkiff, who plays her hubby], first of all, is a fantastic actor and very, very nurturing and caring. We cracked up and tried to make it as light-hearted as possible. Still, [love scenes] are just nerve-racking. After the first one was over, they yelled, "Cut!" and we hopped off each other and I just stood there grabbing my head going, "Not my husband. Not my husband. Not my husband."

TVGO: You had some courtroom scenes at the end. Did you have a sense of deja vu?

Harmon: Oh completely! It was hard to keep Susan from being a tad bitchy in that area because Abbie was just itching to get out.

TVGO: Did it get you thinking about going back someday? We asked our readers what New Year's resolutions Hollywood should make in 2002, and one of the top vote-getters was, "Bring Angie Harmon back to L&O."

Harmon: You're killing me, really? Could you send that over to L&O really quick? (Laughing)

TVGO: It probably doesn't help that your successor, Elisabeth Rohm, isn't getting the best reviews. If producers did approach you about a full-time return, what would you say?

Harmon: (Long pause) I think, at this point in my career, I'm just so anxious to do other things. I can't tell you how much I 
appreciate and love the reception and the care that Abbie 
received and that I received for playing that role. I mean, she was so much fun. [If I did return,] I would love to be able to do other things as well. I don't know that I would come back and do her permanently, just because I'm in a different place now. There's another person who lives in my house now that needs my attention. It's one thing when you go and shoot a movie, you're gone for two, three, six months... but there's an end to it. With L&O, you just keep shooting; it never stops. And that's fine I'm all up for hard work. I'm all up for 17-hour days. But at this point in my career, I think especially in the first year of being married I want to be able to come home to my husband and cook dinner and things like that. I never thought I would enjoy doing laundry and cooking dinner and things like that. It's just been so much fun.

TVGO: Speaking of your new hubby, now that football season is over at least for Jason and the Giants what are Sundays like now in the Harmon-Sehorn household?

Harmon: He actually just had knee surgery four days ago, so he's been sitting up on the couch. I love football and I love my husband being able to play. I think [the Giants] had a fantastic shot [at post-season play], but it's hard to go to the Super Bowl last year and to not even go to the playoffs now. But I know it's all according to God's plan, and Jason knows that. And as long as he's okay, then I'm okay.

TVGO: You get a lot of attention for your looks. What's it like 
being married to someone who's...

Harmon: ... prettier than I am? (Laughing)

TVGO: I was going to say someone who's known as a bigger sex symbol than even you.

Harmon: It's fun. If he gets up at night to go to the restroom, I cheer. I let out a little "Woo-hoo!" Because, I mean, he's hot! 
There's just no denying it. And I sit there and just look at him 
and think, "There is no way that I got lucky enough that this 
person who wanted to marry me is as beautiful on the inside as he is on the outside." He's just a hottie.

TVGO: That's not fair.

Harmon: I know, it's really not. (Laughing) I keep waiting for him to rip his head off and turn into a big monster or something. I'll put it to you this way, I'm so flattered that God chose this person for me to walk through life with and to be my husband. And it just makes me tear up every time I talk about it. (Fighting back tears)

TVGO: So, I'm watching Sandra Bernhard try out some new music and stand-up material at Joe's Pub in Manhattan last 
month... (Angie starts to laugh, knowing where this is going) 
She skewered all the usual suspects Madonna, Melissa Rivers. But then she launches into a song about you and how she believes you're lying about being only 29 years old.

Harmon: She kills me.

TVGO: So, you saw it?

Harmon: Yeah, on TV with some friends of mine.

TVGO: What did you think?

Harmon: Of course, I laughed my tail off because I think 
Sandra's hilarious. I was very, very flattered that she'd put a whole song in her act about me. She's just too much. About two or three months later, my friends saw her, and I told them if they ever ran into her, tell her I'm talking to my lawyer and I'm faxing over my driver's license. (Laughing) I thought it was just awesome. She's fantastic. And you know what? My whole thing is, make people laugh. And if I can be part of that, well, then 
that's the best thing that I can do. I mean the chorus is my name. Hilarious!

TVGO: Chorus?! The name of the freakin' song is your name.

Harmon: (Hysterical) That's definitely better than the chorus. The name of the song is "Angie Harmon."



Wolf Doing "God's Work" With SVU
By Vanessa Sibbald  (Zap2it, TV News)
January 14, 2002

LOS ANGELES (Zap2it.com) - While Law & Order gets plenty of media attention, creator Dick Wolf is complaining that it's spin-offs, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and Law & Order: Criminal Intent are being ignored by the press.

"I don't know why SVU and Criminal Intent are not getting written about more," Wolf  complained to a roomful of reporters at the Television Critics Association Press Tour in Pasadena, Calif. "Because all three shows in the last two weeks have been in the Top 20 [in ratings]." 

"I don't know how many of you watch the show, but it has become truly extraordinary," he added, speaking of SVU in particular.

Wolf mentioned that a number of cops had approached him over the last year about the drama series, which deals with sex crime cases, complimenting the show on how it  deals with its subject matter, which has some benefits in the real world.

"Reporting of sexual crimes and crimes against women is up significantly in a lot of major cities and they have been very clear about giving credit to SVU," Wolf said.

In addition, an episode dealing with New York's five-year statute of limitations for a rapist led to an examination by the state's legislature, according to Wolf.

"I think the show is vastly under-appreciated by many of you and your colleagues in this room," he added. "We're doing God's work on that show." 

He also had words for Criminal Intent's lack of press, much of which has been devoted to the show's timeslot competitor, ABC's Alias.

 "You look at these two shows; one is a cartoon and one is really, really good television," he said. "Sorry." 



Actor Michael Moriarty Beaten 
Outside Maple Ridge Bar
(Global BC)
January 9, 2002

MAPLE RIDGE, B.C. - A Hollywood actor who now makes his home in Vancouver has been badly beaten and hospitalized.

Both police and hospital officials are being tight-lipped, but a number of sources confirm that Emmy award-winning actor Michael Moriarty was badly beaten at about 2:45 a.m. Wednesday.

It happened outside the Wolfe Lounge at the Quality Inn Motel in Maple Ridge.

Apparently, the 60-year-old had been drinking at the lounge with a friend when police say three to five males attacked him.

The attack, which was unprovoked, left Moriarty on the ground unconscious.

According to one source, he was bleeding from both ears, had an injured eye, and a broken wrist, but there is no confirmation of that.

Moriarty was transported to Ridge Meadows Hospital in Maple Ridge where a source told BCTV News on Global Moriarty was in emergency and could not be disturbed.

The actor most recently appeared in a Vancouver courtroom charged with assault after allegedly slapping his common-law wife while they were out at a Vancouver restaurant.

The charges against him were stayed on Jan. 31st.

Moriarty has been frank about his difficulties with drinking, but it isn't known what role that may have played in the assault.

Police did arrest a suspect, but he was apparently released on an appearance notice.

Update, as per alt.true-crime: Moriarty was released from the hospital and is recovering at home.

Officers & Gentlemen
By Dennis McCafferty (USA Weekend)
January 27, 2002

What a lineup: TV's top cops as you've never seen -- or heard -- them before 
 
We didn't need an APB to round up this trio of stars from prime time's hot Law & Order shows. When USA WEEKEND Magazine offered Jerry Orbach 

Photo by GREGORY HEISLER for USA WEEKEND
(Detective Lennie Briscoe of Law & Order), Christopher Meloni (Detective Elliot Stabler of Law & Order: SVU) and Jamey Sheridan (Capt. James Deakins of Law & Order: Criminal Intent) the chance to celebrate their series' success in tuxes and top hats, they raced to the scene of the shooting -- photo shooting, that is. The original Law & Order series launched its run in 1990, followed by SVU in 1999 and Criminal Intent in 2001; now all three routinely rank at the top of their time slots. Here, the actors sit down for their first-ever three-way chat and get "interrogated" on what they've learned playing New York cops, how the real men in blue react to them, and whether they're hot dog or doughnut guys.

Let's face it: Format-wise, the Law & Order shows are more Dragnet  than NYPD Blue. Is the franchise the television equivalent of comfort food? 

Orbach: Yes. Our show is a ritual, almost like a Mass. There's going to be discovery of a crime, then the follow-up, then the arrest. In the second half, the suspect goes to trial and either gets convicted or gets off. All of this in 60 minutes. The viewers know what they're getting and like it. 

Of course, Jerry's throwaway line is an indispensable
part of the ritual. What's the most memorable one? 

Sheridan: Give 'em "The Duvet"! 

Orbach: [Grins] Ahhh, "The Duvet." That was a great one but, unfortunately, one the audience didn't fully get. We edited out the set-up, where I said, "$5,000 for a quilt?" And my partner says, "But that's a duvet." This got cut out. So the audience just sees the old lady, who's dead in the hallway, and she's covered up with a little ratty blanket. I say, "At least they could have covered her with a duvet." It sounds like I came up with that out of nowhere. 

We're sure TV corpses appreciate your efforts. So what makes for a great throwaway line, anyway? 

Orbach: Neil Simon's rule of comedy: If there's a "K," it's funny. "Pickle" is funny. [Co-star] Sam Waterston and I debated the throwaway line once. He told me, "It's not always about which is funnier." I said: "Yes, it is. It is always about which is funnier. Especially in a scene in a morgue." 

The line will be there every week, but the casting goes through more lineup changes than a pro sports team. Do you guys need a scorecard to keep everyone straight? 

Meloni: Except for Jerry. He's the Cal Ripken Jr. of the cast. He's penciled in for every game. As for the rest of us? Uneasy lies the crown upon our head. 

You seem safe for now, given your appeal to both men and women. What's the sexiest thing about your character, Chris? 

Meloni: His underwear. They're these skimpy little blue bikini numbers. We did one episode where I was talking to my wife and I dropped trou because I'm getting ready for bed. I got a lot of mail about that. 

Are you going to get naked on Law & Order, as you did in HBO's Oz

Meloni: We'll see. So far, they're pulling out all the stops to make me not pull an Oz

The interrogation room, incidentally, looks as drab as anything on Oz's prison set. How would you customize it? 

Sheridan: I'd just nail down one chair. The suspect is right where I want him, every single time. 

Orbach: And he can't pick it up and throw it at you. 

OK, guys. Law & Order 101, Case Study A: What's the best way to interrogate an Upper East Side socialite who had her husband whacked and dumped his body parts into the Atlantic Ocean? 

Orbach: You start with "It's so hard to get good help these days." 

Case Study B: If you have only an hour while a Park Avenue lawyer, who happens to be a suspect, dines at Nobu, what's the best way to strip down his roadster
for evidence? 

Meloni: First, those cars can rot out at the bottom, so I'd stomp my foot through the floorboards. Then I'd rip off the wheels. From there, it's just a matter of going from the bottom up. If it's already rusted out, you're halfway home. 

Orbach: This is the sort of thing you turn over to a guy like Chris, as you can see. 

Meloni: If you'll notice, his nails are much nicer than mine. So he practices what he preaches. 

Any tips for avoiding a subpoena server? 

Meloni: Don't answer the door or the phone. But that's just good, common-sense advice for living in general. At least that's how I live my life. 

Let's get serious for a moment, because your city has gone through so much trauma this year. What effect have the events of Sept. 11 had on the show and your
feelings about police officers? 

Orbach: We've always felt they were heroes. These guys don't know if they're going to come home at night. They're heroes for just showing up. The best compliment we get is when the real cops say, "Keep making us look good." 

Sheridan: We didn't get back to shooting for several months [after] that day. But I couldn't wait to talk to the guys on the real-life major case squad. I was dying to know how they were doing. As for the show itself, we know the audience is going to be saying, "Where is 9/11?" But it will slowly become part of the show. Something will happen to a character on 9/11 that drove them to do something else, and we'll react to that. You'll see some dust-ups between the fire department and police department. Things like that. 

Like so many others in public safety in New York, the Law & Order guys have made a tradition of eating from street vendors while walking down a crowded sidewalk. What's on the menu? 

Meloni: Sabrett's hot dogs with sauerkraut, mustard, onions and just a hint of ketchup. You either bring your A game for a hot dog or you don't bother coming. 

Sheridan: In my case, Deakins has been trying to lose weight for 10 years. He's avoiding that bad Irish food, the mashed potatoes and corned beef. He's doing the granola-and-salad thing, and he hates it. 

And coffee? 

Meloni: Yes. As strong as possible. But with year-old sugar and sour milk. 

Sheridan: Deakins is fighting not to drink it. If he did, he'd probably kill somebody. It's supposed to be decaf, but you never get decaf in a police station. 

Given your status, we bet you guys never get traffic tickets. 

Meloni: Oh, yes, we do. I just got a speeding ticket. I was upstate, and the guy pulls me over. I thought: "I'll flash him a smile. I'll make eye contact. He'll recognize me, and everything will be fine." I give him my license, and I pull it out and show it to him, like "Recognize the face?" 

The old "I'm not a police officer, but I play one on TV" trick? 

Meloni: Yep. He came back 10 minutes later, and I was $110 poorer. 

We're sure it was nothing personal, because he probably watches the show every week. How obsessive do the Law & Order fans get? 

Orbach: There are people who watch our show three times a day in reruns. There are people who know all the different partners, all the different assistant DAs. They'll quote to me the specific title of an episode; I may or may not remember it. But they know the title, plot synopsis, cast -- everything, chapter and verse. 

Sheridan: They probably have the Law & Order reference guide in their library. There really is one [Law & Order: The
Unofficial Companion]. It catalogs every episode: who's on
it, the title, the synopsis. 

Do fans notice you on the streets of New York, or are you able to walk around without too much of that? 

Meloni: That's the difference between television and movies. There's a story about George Clooney [before he moved to the big screen] being on a plane with Mel Gibson. They get off the plane together, and people are whispering, "Oh, look! It's Mel Gibson!" They pay $10 a ticket to see him 60 feet high on a movie screen, so they're excited. Then George comes around and it's "Hey, George. How ya doin'?" That's because he's in their living rooms for free. In television, you're part of the family. 

Orbach: For the most part, I can just walk down the street, and a guy says, "Hey! Love your show!" Then you give them a friendly nod, and it's "Thanks. Great. I'll be seeing ya ..." And that's it. It keeps it simple. 

Favorite crime flicks

Sheridan: Bullitt, because Steve McQueen ticked like a watch. His upper lip sweats. That's about it. 

Orbach: One that I was in, Prince of the City. It conveyed the humanity of the cops, how they could be tempted by money and narcotics.

Meloni: Blood Simple. It kept me on the edge of my seat. 

Best trick to play on SVU's conspiracy nut, Detective John Munch, played by Richard Belzer Sheridan: Show up on his show out of sequence and make him think he's lost it. 

Orbach: Make him play somebody else besides Belzer. 

Meloni: Prove to him that it was, in fact, Lee Harvey Oswald who acted solo. 

Their characters' Walter Mitty fantasies

Meloni: To have a crush on Detective Munch. 

Sheridan: To be Phil Simms. For Jim Deakins, nothing could
beat being the Super Bowl quarterback of the New York Giants.

Orbach: To be on the PGA tour. He only gets to play golf every once in a while. He has to take the subway to Van Cortlandt Park, where you hit balls around old used cars. 



Orbach Says Being On Law & Order Helps NYC
By Vanessa Sibbald (Zap2it.com, TV News)
January10, 2002

LOS ANGELES (Zap2it.com) - In the wake of Sept. 11's terrorist attack on New York's World Trade Center and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., citizens across the country wanted to do their part to help the country heal from its wounds. New Yorker Jerry
 Orbach feels he is doing his part to help repair the city by starring on NBC's Law & Order.

"Having the opportunity to do this in this long of an arc has given me, and is continuing to give me, a feeling that I'm doing something for the city and the people of it and for the cops," he told reporters at the Television Critics Association Press Tour in Pasadena, Calif., on Wednesday (Jan. 9). "The way the city feels about us, it's like we're part of the good things that happen in the city." 

"I can't go down and physically remove I-beams from the rubble of Sept. 11," he says. "But I get a feeling that we're helping in some way by the image we're portraying. It's that old like of the cops saying to me, 'Keep making us look good.'" 

Unlike many of the show's other stars who have left the show for greener pastures, such as Chris Noth, Paul Sorvino, Jill Hennessy and Benjamin Bratt, Orbach says he plans on staying put.

"I've haven't been tempted to leave. The idea that I can stay home in New York as an actor and I don't have to be on the road and away from my wife... it's just been wonderful," he said. "I wouldn't want any other job, at least for the time being." 



Et Cetera

Wanna know why you won't be seeing the Law & Order trifecta episode which had been in production on September 11? Called "Terrorist," the threefer (which would have encompassed casts and episodes on all three L&Os)  touched on more than just the idea of a terrorist attack in New York City -- it was going to be a bombing -- at the World Trade Center -- with ties to Osama bin Laden -- and during the trial a threat of a biological attack would have been made. needless to say, that's a little too ripped from the headlines, even months afterwards.... Great Caesar's Ghost! TNT is making a miniseries of Julius Caesar, about the rise and fall of the Roman emperor ... and in addition to such luminaries as Richard Harris, Christopher Walken and Valerie Golino, look for Chris Noth to play Roman general Pompey. Production on the four-hour mini was scheduled to start  in Malta and Bulgaria in February.... Oscar-winner Jodie Foster was rumored to have been cast for a guest appearance on Law & Order, playing a battered wife who murders her husband. This rumor has since been discredited, although there will be a battered-woman-who-kills-husband episode coming up ... Jill Hennessy's vehicle, Crossing Jordan and Law & Order: Criminal Intent have both been picked up for a second season.