From Michael Connelly’s “The Lincoln Lawyer” books and the 2011 movie with Matthew McConaughey and Marisa Tomei, the story has now gotten the Netflix treatment in The Lincoln Lawyer series with Manuel Garcia-Rulfo and Neve Campbell.
“Mickey Haller is just a larger than life character,” Garcia-Rulfo told Yahoo Canada. “The first time I read the scenes that they sent me for the audition, I really connected with the words.”
“He's an addict and he’s dealing with many things, but weirdly enough,...I was really connected… It was very similar of what me, Manuel, was going through… It was all the pressure of me doing a first lead on a TV show in a different language.It was a lot of things at stake.
Based on the sequel book “The Brass Verdict,” The Lincoln Lawyer on Netflix has jam packed every episode, with Mickey unexpectedly receiving the caseload of a dead colleague. Working in a Lincoln - as you would expect - he working through these cases, which includes a murder, as questions rise about the circumstances of his colleagues death.
While Garcia-Rulfo did see the Lincoln Lawyer movie in 2011, the actor revealed that he didn’t rewatch to look at McConaughey’s version of the character.
“We wanted to do our own thing,” Garcia-Rulfo said.
Mickey works alongside case manager, Lorna (Becki Newton), researcher, Cisco (Angus Sampson) and one of his former clients, Izzy, he hired as his driver (Jazz Raycole).
“She's really complex and I think dealing with addiction is something that's really, really important to me,...and so to be able to play someone who's kind of multidimensional, and kind of going through a lot of her own struggles, and coming out of it, she kind of has a really great arc,” Jazz Raycole says about playing Izzy.
“Right away, it was clear to me she was bold, and unafraid, I immediately could see her in my mind when I read it,” Becki Newton added about playing Lorna.
“I like that she's very smart, and very loud, she's not afraid to stand out and juxtaposed to this legal world that can be…classified as a little stale when you watch it on TV, she's not afraid to be bright and not afraid to be different, and still takes what she does very seriously.”
In terms of playing Cisco, who in the series is data Loran, who was previously Mickey’s wife, Angus Sampson said he was curious about the circumstances of his character.
“I thought it was an interesting set of circumstances that I hadn't seen before where it was like, how would I react, going to work with the love of my life's ex-husband?” he said. “I was curious to put myself in that…interplay with the three of us, where are we vulnerable?”
In addition to his work, Mickey also has to co-parent his daughter with his first ex-wife Maggie McPherson (Campbell), who is also a prosecutor, building a case against a Filipino human trafficker.
“She's such a good actress,” Garcia-Rulfo said. “She's an excellent and very professional actress but…she's just very natural.”
“It's very rare to find actors like that, she's just very pure. Mickey Haller, he's always juggling with all these things, the cases, the two ex-wives, and I think Maggie is the one that he does everything for… I think the character of Maggie, Neve, grounds Mickey Haller. So the way she did it was incredible. It really helped me.”