O'Donnell Tackles CIA On "The Company"

Once a star in "Batman Forever" and "Scent of a Woman," Chris O'Donnell's latest project "The Company" revolves around a topic of great interest to him.

On Wednesday's The Early Show, O'Donnell sat down with Harry Smith to discuss this new miniseries which airs on TNT on Sunday nights.

In "The Company," O'Donnell plays a new member of the CIA. He believes that this branch of government is a fascinating topic. "It's shrouded in such mystery," he said.

O'Donnell loves the ability to humanize these CIA agents who risk their lives everyday. "To be able to have some perspective on these guys that are out in the field and on the front line … well, who are these guys?" he said.

On the show, O'Donnell's character enters the CIA "gung-ho" and "naïve." Over the course of 40 years, viewers watch how his character develops and hardens throughout his difficult career.

The show, which starts in Berlin and moves on to the Bay of Pigs, was directed by Mikael Solomon. Prior to directing, O'Donnell says Solomon was "one of the best cinematographers in the world."

O'Donnell noted that the six-episode miniseries format of "The Company" was the perfect length. "From a storytelling perspective, you have a lot of opportunities. It's not TV where you are rushing to get things done and it's not a film where you have all the time in the world," he said.

The all-star cast, which includes Michael Keaton and Alfred Molina, all brought their own technique, according to O'Donnell. "Michael Keaton is very technical," he said. "And Alfred Molina — you don't even know he's acting — makes it look so easy."

Off the set, O'Donnell and his wife, Caroline Fentress, are expecting their fifth child.
  • Daniel Aven

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