‘Your Honor’s Hunter Doohan on Working With Bryan Cranston & the Show’s Shades of Grey
As a judge who prides himself on doing the right thing, Michael Desiato (Cranston) finds himself in an impossible position when his son Adam (Doohan) is involved in a hit and run that leaves the son of New Orleans’ biggest crime boss, Jimmy Baxter (Michael Stuhlbarg), dead. Below, Doohan offers a glimpse into the moral gray areas Your Honor will touch on, reveals what it was like working with Cranston, and more.
What should people know about your character Adam before tuning into the show?
Hunter Doohan: I don’t think they should know anything going into it. I think that’ll be the fun of it all because it starts with a bang. You get launched right into the story.
Definitely. Your character pretty much has the worst day anyone could probably have in the first episode.
Yes. I think that’s safe to say. Maybe you could argue that Rocco (Benjamin Wadsworth) has a worse day. But you’re totally right. It starts off on the anniversary of Adam’s mom’s death and he’s trying to go do this really sweet thing and honor his mom because he doesn’t feel like enough justice has been done for her and he doesn’t have enough answers. But then, he gets scared, gets into this crash, and then makes this terrible, terrible decision to leave, which upends his entire life.
Bryan Cranston plays Adam’s father, Judge Michael Desiato. What was it like working with him and what did you do behind-the-scenes to foster the father-son bond?
I’m just going to geek out for a second. I love Bryan and I loved him way before this. And I’m always hoping people don’t think I’m making this up because I was just the biggest Breaking Bad fan, my brother and I have watched it through several times. But he’s amazing. He’s so much fun to work with, which is really helpful on a show where the material is so dark.
When I got down [to New Orleans] the first time, last year, we just started hanging out. And we had the dog trainer bring over the dog that plays Django in the show so we could bond with him as well, which was really fun. We had a movie night. We watched Shawshank Redemption, which is supposed to be our characters’ favorite movie in the show.
You did play a younger version of Aaron Paul’s character in Apple TV+’s Truth Be Told, and now you’ve worked with Cranston. Kind of a Breaking Bad thing going on here.
Yeah. I started joking, I’m only going to take jobs that have a direct connection to Breaking Bad. I feel like I’ve won some sweepstakes or something where I’ve tricked my way into working with these people and I’m just waiting for someone to catch on and stop letting me [Laughs].
From the outside, Adam has a pretty good life and appears to be a good kid. Is there more to him under the surface?
Yeah, I would say Adam is a guy who’s far from perfect. To me, he has the best of intentions, and that’s what’s going to make people care for him. But his actions, or sometimes inaction, and these giant mistakes that he keeps making throughout the show are going to be what pull people apart.
The whole show centers around this moral gray area. Like, what is right or wrong or what is justifiable to do for someone you love? Hopefully, people will relate to him the way that I did reading about him on the page. The way that Peter Moffat constructed this character, I think, is amazing.
Your Honor, Season 1, Premieres Sunday, December 6, 10/9c, Showtime