NBC ANNOUNCES GOLDEN GLOBE WINNER AND OSCAR�-NOMINATED ANGELA BASSETT WILL JOIN THE CAST OF 'ER' FOR 15TH AND FINAL SEASON
BURBANK -- April 28, 2008 -- NBC announced that Golden Globe winner and Oscar� nominee Angela Bassett will join the cast of NBC's long running show "ER" (Thursdays, 10-11 p.m. ET/PT) in early fall of next season as a tough-as-nails attending physician who is coming back to Chicago after doing tsunami relief work in Indonesia. Her arrival shakes up the ER but her strong exterior hides a troubled past that will slowly be revealed.
"Angela is a wonderfully talented actress who I've long hoped to work with," said executive producer John Wells. "We couldn't be more delighted that she's agreed to join us."
Bassett's talent as an actress and executive producer in both television and film have repeatedly earned her respect and acclaim from peers and fans alike, as she has proved herself to be one of the industry's premier leading ladies.
Bassett could be last seen on the big screen as the leading role in Tyler Perry's "Meet the Browns." Previously, she starred opposite Laurence Fishburne in the critically acclaimed "Akeelah and the Bee" for Lions Gate Films. She also received rave reviews for her work in August Wilson's classic play "Fences" at the prestigious Pasadena Playhouse. Bassett recently wrapped Giancarlo Esposito's "Gospel Hill" and "Nothing But the Truth," starring Kate Beckinsale and David Schwimmer. She will also star as Voletta Wallace, mother of slain rapper, Christopher "Notorious B.I.G." Wallace in "Notorious," due out January 2009.
Perhaps best known for her intense portrayal of Tina Turner in the biopic "What's Love Got to Do with It" opposite Fishburne, Bassett earned the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Drama as well as an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Motion Picture. She also secured an Academy Award� nomination for her powerful performance.
Bassett has also received NAACP Image Awards for her performance in "How Stella Got Her Groove Back" as well as her supporting roles in "The Score," "Music of the Heart" and "Malcolm X" (opposite Denzel Washington). She was recognized for her leading role in the television movie "Ruby's Bucket of Blood," for which she also received a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination, bringing her total number of Image Awards to nine. In addition, Basset received NAACP Image Award nominations for her work in the sci-fi feature blockbuster "Contact" and "Boesman and Lena," and an Emmy� nomination for Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie for her work in "The Rosa Parks Story."
In addition to these awards and nominations, Basset has portrayed memorable roles in the features "Mr. 3000," "Sunshine State," "Waiting to Exhale," "Strange Days," "Vampire in Brooklyn" and "Supernova." Recently, Bassett could be heard in theaters across the country voicing the character of Mildred in Disney's animated smash hit "Meet the Robinsons," based on the successful children's book of the same name by William Joyce.
NBC renewed "ER" for a 15th and final season in April. Combining the extraordinary talents of multiple award-winning producer John Wells ("The West Wing" "Third Watch"), best-selling author Michael Crichton ("Jurassic Park") and the creative team at Steven Spielberg's Amblin Television, the venerated series "ER" explores the inner workings of an urban teaching hospital and the critical issues faced by the dedicated physicians and staff of its overburdened emergency room. Currently in its 14th season, the highly acclaimed drama series now holds the distinction of being recognized as the most Emmy�-nominated series in the history of television with 120 nominations. Crichton and Wells serve as executive producers, along with Christopher Chulack, David Zabel, Joe Sachs and Janine Sherman Barrois.
A winner of the prestigious George Foster Peabody Award, the series has also earned 22 Emmy� Awards, including Outstanding Drama Series in 1996, among many accolades. In addition, the cast has been honored with four Screen Actors Guild Awards for Outstanding Ensemble Performance in a Drama Series.
The long-running series stars Maura Tierney ("Diggers," "Welcome to Mooseport,"), Mekhi Phifer ("Dawn of the Dead," "Curb Your Enthusiasm," "8 Mile," "Slow Burn"), Parminder Nagra ("Ella Enchanted," "Bend It Like Beckham"), Linda Cardellini ("Brokeback Mountain, "Scooby-Doo" films, "Grandma's Boy," "Freaks and Geeks"), Scott Grimes ("Band of Brothers," "American Dad," "Party of Five," "Mystery, Alaska") and John Stamos ("A Raisin in the Sun," "Jake in Progress").
On staff at County General Hospital are Abby Lockhart (Tierney), a recovering alcoholic trying her best to juggle a demanding residency and motherhood while everything around her seems to be falling apart; Dr. Greg Pratt (Phifer), an attending fighting for the chief spot on the floor as well as for a firm grasp on his love life; Neela Rasgotra (Nagra), a skilled surgical resident committed to growing in her craft as well as in her place on the surgical team; Sam Taggart (Cardellini), a spirited ER nurse who is finally getting some time to explore life and love both in and outside the hospital; Dr. Archie Morris (Grimes), the quirky-yet-talented attending dedicated to his work but constantly distracted by his own world; and Tony Gates (Stamos), a paramedic-turned-doctor who has overcome numerous obstacles to take on the rigorous challenges of life in the ER.
"ER" is a production of Constant c Productions and Amblin Television in association with Warner Bros. Television.