CCH Pounder

Featured player

For the past two decades, CCH Pounder has built an impressive oeuvre studded with roles befitting a worldly thesp, one who received an education in London and helped set up a cultural museum in Senegal.

The Guyana-born actress has turned heads portraying smart, confident women such as judges and doctors, and she’s at it again with her latest turn as seasoned detective Claudette Wyms on FX’s “The Shield.”

“Claudette very quickly establishes this one-of-the-boys kind of attitude,” Pounder says. “She can hang with them at any rate, as opposed to being a woman fighting for her space in a man’s world. She’s already done the fight, and seeing where it goes from there can get very interesting.”

Indeed, she’s one of the few people who can rattle Vic Mackey, the brawny, morally challenged detective played by Michael Chiklis. Her role has grown considerably meatier since the series debuted two years ago, with Claudette moving from a weary veteran inching toward retirement to a major force threatening to expose Vic’s corrupt ways.

“She takes it on like a cowboy and I can’t be more thrilled,” says Pounder, who has earned two Emmy nominations, one for supporting actress as Dr. Angela Hicks on “ER” and another for a guest spot on “The X-Files.”

Pounder made her television debut more than 20 years ago on “Hill Street Blues” and has since appeared in scores of shows including “L.A. Law” and “The West Wing.” But she says her role on “Shield” is perhaps the best she’s ever had (save for the eccentric motel owner she played in the feature “Bagdad Cafe”).

Which makes it all the more surprising that her part in the series was originally meant for a man. But Pounder fought hard for it because she became enamored of the work of Clark Johnson, director of the pilot episode, after having just finished a TV film with him (“Boycott”).

“I said to Clark, ‘I don’t care what you’re doing next, I want to work with you again,'” she says. “So it was very unexpected the way it worked out, but this just turned out to be the one for me.”

More TV


    Showrunner Stefano Voltaggio on Netflix's 'Zero' About Black Youths in Italy (EXCLUSIVE)

    Netflix recently announced a new Italian original titled “Zero” that will mark the first Italian series centered around the present-day lives of black Italian youths. “Zero” is based on several books by young writer and TV music show host Antonio Dikele Distefano, who was born in Italy from Angolan parents. The project was originated by [...]

  • Content-is-King

    Top TV Execs Tackle New Distribution Landscape in Rome

    ROME – In an increasingly complex TV market, with a host of new big-ticket streaming services preparing to enter an already crowded arena, both buyers and sellers are rethinking some of the fundamentals of the TV business as they grapple with the best way to reach global audiences. A host of top producers, network executives, [...]

  • MIA-MARKET-2019_Europe-Producers-Club_4

    European Producers and Broadcasters Debate How to Weather Streaming Storm

    ROME – The impending rollout of Disney Plus, HBO Max, and other new streaming services promises a new era of uncertainty—and opportunity—for broadcasters and producers in an industry already disrupted by the likes of Netflix and Amazon. At a panel hosted by the European Producers Club Friday afternoon during the MIA market in Rome, executives [...]

  • Kevin-Beggs

    Lionsgate TV Chairman Kevin Beggs on Streamers and TV’s ‘Platinum Era’

    ROME – Over the course of two decades in the industry, Lionsgate Television chairman Kevin Beggs has witnessed the ups and downs of a business that has frequently found itself confronting both dizzying new possibilities as well as existential threats. But these days the veteran exec, who oversees the development of all scripted and non-scripted content [...]

  • MAKING IT -- Season: 1 --

    TV News Roundup: NBC Announces 'Making It' Season 2 Premiere Date

    In today’s TV news roundup, NBC announced the “Making It” Season 2 premiere date and HBO Max greenlit a new docuseries from Brad Goreski and Gary Janetti. DATES Hosts Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman will return with the second season of “Making It” on NBC Dec. 2. After the show’s holiday season premiere, the show [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content