Geoffrey Arend on his Madam Secretary stint
HE is witty and he has a way with words. And soon Geoffrey Arend will be in your living room — as his show Madam Secretary debuts on Indian TV this month. It’s a political series interwoven with the personal and professional life of Elizabeth Mccord (Téa Leoni), secretary of state, where Arend plays the role of head speech writer Matt Mahoney. “I am the right-hand man to Leoni’s character. On a personal level, Mahoney has a habit of thinking highly of himself but professionally he’s always concerned with doing the right thing,” begins the Garden State actor.
Always interested in politics, he spent hours reading through the famous speeches from the American history,including the ones from Lincoln and Nixon, to prepare for his role. He recalls an instance where he ended up playing a real life speech writer for his wife Christina Hendricks (Mad Men fame) while she attended the White House Working Families Summit (2015).
Arend believes that positivity or a sense of overriding hope is what marks Madam Secretary different from rest of the shows around (think Quantico). “You see shows with so much negativity where everything from politics to personal lives are turning bad. While we aren’t trying to paint a rosy picture, our show definitely focusses on the good side of it all. I mean, there are people who work hard, but still want to and can have an equally important family life,” he adds.
When asked about his favourite show,the 38-year-old literature nerd picks Penny Dreadful. “I adore the series for its accents and connections with existing literary traditions (think HG wells),” he tells us.
But of course, Madam Secretary remains one of his career favourites. “Almost everyone in the cast except for me and a couple of others, are from a theatre and musical background. And you always find them breaking into dance or song, it’s so random. You also get to listen to true talents like Patina Miller singing. It’s been a unique experience.”
Premiers June 20.
10 pm on AXN
— Arya P Dinesh