This badass motherfucker is 70 years old today. Happy birthday, Sam Waterston! I still miss your TV show.
"This season’s shows are as good as any we’ve ever made on Law & Order. A job like the one I’ve had doesn’t happen in my line of work. I’ve had a great time. It’s opened countless opportunities, kept me close to home, family, and friends, given me millions of wonderful things to say in highly dramatic circumstances, and kept me out of trouble. I have no complaints, none, but I’m as surprised as anyone. I couldn’t imagine there would not be a 21st season on NBC, either. So, if we end up tied for first with ‘Gunsmoke’ for longest running primetime drama ever, that’ll do. No complaints. I’m permanently grateful to Dick Wolf and the close-knit community that’s our crew, writers, actors and producers. What a class act they are, and with NBC’s support over these many years, they’ve changed my life. To the fans of the show, thanks for your amazing loyalty. Last but not least, unbelievable numbers of people in New York adopted us as their mascot, the highest possible compliment from the best town around."
"Seems like every day, we hear about another corrupt civil servant. Seems that behind every success story of the last ten years, a scandal is exploding. We’re facing a rising sea of corruption, and we wonder: who will be the next to be drowned? Who will be saved? And what will become of our good works? When will it stop, Donald, and who will stop it?"
Jack McCoy, Law & Order 19x22, “The Drowned and the Saved”
It’s old, but I don’t give a shit. Read it. It’s delightful writing and it’s about Sam Waterston. You have no reason not to read it, especially you budding political scientists out there.
Have a look at this pedigree: he was born in Massachusetts to a semanticist father and a Mayflower-descendant mother; he graduated from Yale and spent a year studying abroad at the Sorbonne; he’s deeply absorbed in his Episcopal faith; he’s got two vertical inches over Bush 43; he’s devoted a large chunk of his professional life to putting away special-guest bad guys while modeling fine suits. In fact, many of his roles suggest a fascination with morality, justice and human suffering. He earned an Oscar nomination in 1984 for his work as journalist Sydney Schanberg in “The Killing Fields.” His first notable TV role came on the short-lived drama “I’ll Fly Away,” which was rooted in the social tumult of the 1950s. But lest you think he’s humorless, he also appeared in a faux commercial on “Saturday Night Live” endorsing insurance for the elderly against robots who “eat old people’s medicine for fuel.” He has a folksy demeanor, not as genteel as you’d expect, but close. His natural speech is the stuff politicos practice—it’s just eloquent enough that it doesn’t sound calculated.
"A [TD Ameritrade] spokesperson says that Sam Waterston, the current front man, tested highest in terms of trustworthiness, honesty, and credibility from the pool of nine or so celebrities presented to focus groups."
Fortune Magazine, 2004. Hahahahaha you needed a focus group to figure that out?