Aaron Sorkin’s return to television was touted as a classic network drama made for cable, taking us behind the scenes of ACN, a fictional cable news network, where a legendary anchor (Jeff Daniels) was getting bored with the current predictable state of the media and politics; the arrival of an ex-girlfriend (Emily Mortimer) as ACN’s new executive producer was a shot in the arm. The template was the same as in Sorkin’s previous TV shows, but this one was always set a year or two in the past, using major news events as a starting point for Sorkin’s own thoughts on various ethical dilemmas. Witty and engaging, with a very dedicated cast (including Jane Fonda in a returning guest spot), but uneven. Sorkin’s sermonizing revealed what looked like cranky contempt of anything that wasn’t old-school Cronkite reporting.
2012-2014:U.S. Made for TV. 25 episodes. Color. Created by Aaron Sorkin. Theme: Thomas Newman. Cast: Jeff Daniels (Will McAvoy), Emily Mortimer (Mackenzie “Mac” McHale), John Gallagher, Jr. (Jim Harper), Alison Pill, Thomas Sadoski, Dev Patel, Olivia Munn, Sam Waterston.
Emmy: Outstanding Actor (Daniels) 12-13.