Much has been said about a West Wing reboot since Donald Trump was voted into the White House. Since the US elected its controversial president, fans have been clamouring for creator Aaron Sorkin to pick up his pen and write some more Pennsylvania Avenue wish fulfilment.
And according to West Wing star Rob Lowe, the cast would be there in a shot should they get the call-up…
Speaking to RadioTimes.com and other press, Lowe said he would return to The West Wing “in a minute”.
“I think we all are kind of standing behind Aaron Sorkin going, ‘THINK!!!'”
In the past, Sorkin has suggested he will revive his critically acclaimed political drama – but only if he comes up with a good enough idea, a stumbling block Lowe knows only too well.
The West Wing cast (L-R) Richard Schiff, Allison Janney, Dulé Hill, John Spencer, Martin Sheen, Rob Lowe, Janel Moloney and Bradley Whitford
“I know he would do it if he could think of it. We talk about it all the time. I don’t know what it would look like.”
Lowe also expressed his reservations about the realism of a series that, when it aired from 1999-2006, was looked upon as liberal idealism.
“It was always wish fulfilment, even when it was on. Now it would seem like science fiction – that would be my only qualm.”
Lowe’s role in The West Wing followed his teen idol years in the 1980s which saw him catapulted to global fame as part of Hollywood’s “Brat Pack”, thanks to roles in hit films The Outsiders and St Elmo’s Fire. But it was also a period that saw the actor mired in controversy – thanks in part to the leak of an infamous sex tape in 1988.
“I definitely have moments where I look back and go, ‘Where were my parents? What was everybody thinking?” he reflects. “But when you go through an adventure where a lot of it’s good, a lot of it isn’t so good, with perspective and time, you look back on it and go, ‘Do you know what, not a lot of people get to do that.’
“It is a journey that two or three people a decade get to go through.”
Still, Lowe says he has no regrets. “The thing is that I can’t argue with the results and I really think that everything has led me to where I am and I’ve never been happier.
“I’ve never had my fingers in more pies, I’ve never had more opportunity and never been more fulfilled or healthy so I don’t think I’d want to change anything because I might not end up sitting here right now.”
Indeed, one of those many “pies” is new ITV drama Wild Bill in which Lowe plays the eponymous “fish out of water” cop who is sent from America to head up a police force in Boston, Lincolnshire.
Since his West Wing days Lowe has starred in Brothers and Sisters and Parks and Recreation, and most recently appeared in Code Black and The Grinder – but his appearance on ITV primetime will no doubt raise a few eyebrows among viewers. “I was looking for something different and good,” he explains.
“I wanted a larger than life character, I wanted something gritty, I wanted something that allowed me to be highly verbal and I wanted something that wasn’t American network television.”
Lowe also serves as an executive producer on the series, which he calls “a character study dressed up as a procedural.”
“It would be a good companion piece to Better Call Saul or maybe the second season of Fargo,” he adds. “It’s very serious but it’s very weird and not afraid of being funny in the weirdness.”
And should it return for a second series, the actor has an eye on a more exotic location than chilly Lincolnshire:
“In season two Wild Bill will go to the Bahamas. He’s going to become the police force. There’s a terrible coconut theft ring that needs to be cracked and Wild Bill needs to do it!”
Wild Bill airs on Wednesdays at 9pm on ITV from 12th June