×

Listen: Regina King Teases Damon Lindelof’s ‘Watchmen,’ Eyes ‘Southland’ Revival

Welcome to “Remote Controlled,” a podcast from Variety featuring the best and brightest in television, both in front of and behind the camera.

In this week’s episode, Variety’s executive editor of TV, Debra Birnbaum, chats with Regina King, who received an Emmy nomination for her gripping performance as Latrice Butler in the Netflix limited series “Seven Seconds.”

Listen to this week’s podcast for free below and at Apple Podcasts:

Despite the number of crime dramas now on the air, King thinks “Seven Seconds” broke out of the pack because of “the relevance to what’s going on right now,” she says. “It’s some powerful stuff we’re dealing with.”

Playing a mother whose life changes when her son dies in a matter of “seven seconds,” King thought that looking at police shootings from the lens of the violence as a systemic problem was a valuable way to use television to change hearts and minds.

“I don’t think this is just a people of color problem. It’s an American problem,” she says. “And until America is honest about it and wants to have conversations across the line about it, which means some really painful conversations, this beautiful country that we love and that we are so honored to be in cannot keep that title of ‘land of the free, home of the brave’ without owning the past and the present.”

Working as a director on series like “This Is Us” and “The Good Doctor,” King also acknowledges that the person behind the camera telling the story is just as crucial to seeing greater representation in the industry as is an on-screen portrayal. That also factors into casting. “A truer story is being told when it’s told from the person who’s had that experience,” she says.

While she remained mum on details of her character in Damon Lindelof’s “Watchmen,” which was just picked up to series by HBO, she says, “in true Damon fashion, I’m sure I will be guessing from script to script” how the series carries on. She did share, though, that she will “have to eat my Wheaties” in order to keep up with the physical demands of the show. “I can see myself doing this for a few years,” she says. “I feel grateful to be this close to 50 and still being able to run and hop over stuff.”

Having a prior relationship from collaborating on Lindelof’s “The Leftovers,” King recalls how her heart “just kinda skipped a beat” when she got the first call about the show. Inside the initial script that had to be hand-delivered, since “everything was so top-secret,” she says Lindelof wrote her a note that he had always envisioned her as the character and “could not think of a better woman to lead this. So I hope you see this and enjoy this as much as I did writing it. And let’s do this.”

Lindelof also left a second note King could only open once she reached a certain page in the script, and when she did, she found “a picture of me that was drawn of what he saw as the character,” she says. “It just made my heart smile.”

King also reflects on her experience playing Lydia on “Southland,” insisting that she would revisit the character “in a heartbeat.” “Whenever we run into each other, we talk about it all the time. And I won’t say no,” King says of her co-stars.

New episodes of “Remote Controlled” are available every Friday. Subscribe on iTunesStitcherSoundcloud, or anywhere you download podcasts. You can find past episodes here and on Apple Podcasts.

Let us know what you think of Variety’s podcasts: Email us at podcasts@variety.com to offer comments, suggestions, and ideas for interview subjects you’d like to hear from. 

More TV

  • Michael Rooker

    Michael Rooker Joins Showtime Pilot 'The President Is Missing'

    Michael Rooker has been cast as a series regular in the Showtime drama pilot “The President Is Missing.” Rooker joins previously announced lead David Oyelowo and cast members Janet McTeer, Medina Senghore, Paul Adelstein, and Gina Gallego in the pilot, which is based on the novel of the same name by James Patterson and Bill [...]

  • Stella Baker The Republic of Sarah

    CW's 'Republic of Sarah' Pilot Casts Stella Baker in Lead Role

    Newcomer Stella Baker has been cast in the title role in The CW’s “The Republic of Sarah” pilot, Variety In the pilot, faced with the destruction of her town at the hands of a greedy mining company, rebellious high school teacher Sarah Cooper (Baker) utilizes an obscure cartographical loophole to declare independence. Now Sarah must [...]

  • Kelly Campbell - hulu

    Kelly Campbell Named Hulu President

    Hulu’s chief marketing officer Kelly Campbell has been promoted to president of Hulu, a move that comes in the wake of Randy Freer’s recent exit as CEO of the company. Changes have been afoot at Hulu internally, now that the streaming service is now fully under Disney’s operational control. Disney TV Studios’ Dana Walden now [...]

  • The Sleepers

    Berlinale Series Market Sets Spotlight on Central and Eastern Europe

    It boasts one of the fastest-growing TV industries on the planet, but that hasn’t cleared up misconceptions when it comes to Central and Eastern Europe. “I would like to kill some stereotypes about the region,” said Kamila Zlatušková, founder of the Serial Killer TV Festival in Brno, Czech Republic, during a showcase of regional series [...]

  • Pete Davidson

    Pete Davidson Thinks He 'Should Be Done' With 'SNL': 'They Think I'm F---ing Dumb'

    Pete Davidson’s time as a cast member on “Saturday Night Live” may be coming to an end, the comedian revealed as he discussed the future of his career in an interview with Charlamagne tha God on Monday. In a candid interview, Davidson was asked by “The Breakfast Club” host where he saw himself in five [...]

  • Miriam Haley and Tarale Wulff

    Women Who Testified in Harvey Weinstein Trial Slam His Lawyers for 'Victim Blaming' 

    Six women testified during the Harvey Weinstein rape trial, and now that the former movie mogul was found guilty of two felony charges, those women are speaking out with newfound freedom. Miriam Haley, who was assaulted by Weinstein in 2006, resulting in him being convicted of a criminal sex act (which carries a maximum sentence [...]

  • Mekai Curtis Curtis Jackson

    'Power' Prequel Series 'Raising Kanan' Casts Mekai Curtis in Lead Role

    “Power Book III: Raising Kanan” at Starz has found its lead actor. Mekai Curtis has been cast as a young Kanan Stark, the character played in the mothership series by Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson. He joins previously announced cast member Patina Miller, who will play Kanan’s mother. The young Kanan is described as smart, driven [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content