‘Law & Order’ newcomer Tony Goldwyn is game for a crossover with Mariska Hargitay and Chris Meloni

It’s an exciting time to be a stan in the “Law & Order” universe, as Tony Goldwyn has recently joined the realm.

Goldwyn, known in part for his role as President Fitzgerald Grant on “Scandal,” gained a legion of fans in the early 2010s who shipped his character with Kerry Washington’s powerful lawyer-turned-PR fixer, Olivia Pope. When news broke in February that Goldwyn would be joining “Law & Order,” which has a famous fan base of its own, “L&O” fans couldn’t have been more thrilled.

Goldwyn took on the role of District Attorney Nicholas Baxter after Sam Waterston’s Jack McCoy stepped down, and made his debut in the March 14 episode “Balance of Power,” throwing his co-workers for a loop by showing up to the crime scene and ironically taking a more hands-off approach at the end of the episode after EADA Nolan Price (Hugh Dancy) wrapped up the case.

Tony Goldwyn (NBC)

Tony Goldwyn (NBC)
TODAY.com spoke to Goldwyn in a new interview about his time so far as the DA — and which other stars from the “Law & Order” world he’d be most excited to share a scene with in a potential crossover (a three-show crossover between “L&O,” “SVU” and “Organized Crime” has happened before).

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

Sam Waterston pulled inspiration for his “Law & Order” character from real-life District Attorney Robert Morgenthau. Now that you’re in the DA role, do you pull inspiration either from real life or another film character? Have you made the role your own?
I wouldn’t say that Nick Baxter, my character, that I’m modeling him after anyone in particular. I’ve always been fascinated with the criminal justice system. I’m on the board of an incredible organization called the Innocence Project, which is at the forefront of criminal justice reform in this country and has pioneered the use of DNA evidence to free the wrongfully convicted — which we’re actually doing a show about now. We’re filming it, so you’ll see that soon.

(I have) many friends that are lawyers, and some are prosecutors, and some are defense lawyers, but I kind of wanted to find my own way into it.

“Law & Order” showrunner Rick Eid pitched you this role. Many “Law & Order” stars talk to Dick Wolf before starting the job. Did you have a conversation with him?
No, I didn’t speak to Dick about this. I spoke to Rick Eid, who runs “Law & Order” now and is really in charge of the writing. He’s the one who really described the show to me, and it sounded great.

Dick and I, I think, tried to connect, but we kind of missed each other. And I just said, “Look, sign me up.”

You’ve previously directed an episode of “Law & Order,” in addition to shows like “Dexter” and “Scandal.” With your director’s eye — does that influence your acting decisions as well?
Yeah, I was lucky enough to direct “Law & Order” like 18 years ago in 2006 with Sam (Waterston) and Dennis Farina and Jesse Martin and Annie Parisse — incredible cast, as always, on “Law & Order.” I’ve directed a lot, and when I’m acting, I’m so happy not to think about directing. I would never presume to think what a director should be doing.

I guess the only difference it makes for me as an actor is I can really sympathize with what a director’s concerns are because I’ve been in the hot seat myself. So hopefully I can be helpful.

It’s no secret you’d love Kerry Washington to guest star on “Law & Order.” Now that you’ve seen the different roles on the show, do you have one in mind you’d want her to play if she came on?
If Kerry Washington comes to “Law & Order,” she will be a villain. I can just tell you that right now.Kerry Washington, Tony Goldwyn (Tony Rivetti / Getty Images)

Kerry Washington, Tony Goldwyn (Tony Rivetti / Getty Images)
I love that you both were having fun on Instagram recently, and she responded to a quote from one of your other interviews that you reposted with the text, “I need you on my team @kerrywashington!” She replied, “@tonygoldwyn I’ll call you later. You got this!!!” Has she called you yet?
No, she hasn’t called me. I told her I need her, and she said she’d be there. But once again — I’m waiting.

Tony Goldwyn (@tonygoldwyn via Instagram)

Tony Goldwyn (@tonygoldwyn via Instagram)
All the shows in this “Law & Order” universe sometimes cross over with each other. Who from “SVU” or “Organized Crime” would you think would be fun for Nick Baxter to have a scene with?
Wow! I think it would be really interesting to have a scene with Mariska (Hargitay) — that would be really cool. Yeah, or Chris (Meloni). I mean, at the end of the day, they all work for me.

Mariska directs as well. So she may come direct you one day.
Oh, maybe she’ll direct me. That’d be good, too. As long as she’s nice to me.

Is there anything you can tease about what we’ll see from Nick Baxter in upcoming episodes?
Nick Baxter is trying to put his team together, and as these initial episodes evolve, you’re really going to see Nolan Price, Hugh Dancy’s character, and I kind of sniffing each other out. They’re trying to figure out where we come from, so there’s quite a lot of tension in addition to some really interesting cases that I was really happy to see.

Each script takes on something that’s pretty topical, as always with “Law & Order,” and quite, some real sensitive social issues that I think are really worth discussing. I was really pleased to see that.

And you have an office now.
I finally have an office that is actually decorated. We’ll see how long that lasts.

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