If you are a fan of “The Wire,” the best TV series ever, you must read this article. It’s in Maxim of all places, but they talked to almost all of the major players in the show. Here are some excerpts:
Chris Albrecht (former chairman and CEO, HBO): The response to The Corner was far beyond anything we imagined. When David came in with The Wire, his original pitch was, “I wanna do the most in-depth look at a police investigation that’s ever been on TV.”
David Simon: I had discussions with Carolyn Strauss (at HBO) and they were willing to look at the idea of a pilot script. The idea of doing something in the world of the drug war. So we submitted three scripts. And during that writing process, that’s when we put together McNulty and the Barksdales
Dominic West (Officer James “Jimmy” McNulty): It was just another audition tape to send off to a casting director. I suppose the thing that was going through my mind was how I spent most of my boyhood running around pretending to be Starsky or Hutch, so it was something of a fantasy for me to play an American cop.
Wendell Pierce (Det. William “Bunk” Moreland): I actually was in the (interrogation) box with a couple people as they were asked questions, and then I hooked up with real “Bunk.” He took me around, telling me stories about Homicide, introducing me to all these other cops. “This guy is going to be playing me in this new show. Come here Bunk!” He called people Bunk. It comes from the military. Your bunk mate.
Deirdre Lovejoy (Rhonda Pearlman): I never thought of myself as any kind of romantic anything, but it’s the first day of work and Dominic is on top of me! I’m usually not the girl who has to sit there with her clothes off, but it is cable, so the clothes are off. Dominic said to me, “Oh, last week I was on top of Renée Zellweger!”
Clarke Peters (Det. Lester Freamon): I wound up buying a house in Baltimore, and when I go back I see some of the characters who were just extras, whether they’re bartenders or councilmen or street people. They’re still there. They’re like, “That was your gig, but this is our life!” It’s surreal.
Andre Royo (Bubbles): I was excited be-cause, you know, HBO at the time was Sunday night. Me and my lady puffin’ a blunt. It wasn’t like the networks. It was that channel with real writing, real actors, real stories. So I was excited till they said they wanted me to audition for a junkie named Bubbles. I went in, and David Simon was there, and I said, “Look, I’m not doing any characteristic junkie. I’m not cracking. I don’t wanna be the comic relief.”
Michael K. Williams (Omar Little): Ninety-nine percent of Omar was on the page when I came to the table. The main thing I brought was that I needed for Omar to look and sound like a local. I didn’t want him to sound like a dude from Brooklyn.
Wendell Pierce: One day David came up to us when we shooting and said, “I’m writing a scene right now for you guys, and I want you to do the whole scene, but you can only say the word fuck.”
Domenic West: 44 fucks? It’s about 20 too many. We even added some in post-production. It came out of something a cop had said to David once, and he thought that he could write an entire report only using the word fuck.
So many great quotes in this article with so many great actors from “The Wire.”
Man, I still miss that show.
For more of the article, go here.
HT to @opedr for sourcing the interview.