Jeff Daniels is done playing Hollywood's angry dad

“I'm of the age where if I'm not challenged, I just lose interest,” Jeff Daniels said on “Salon Talks” during an episode about his lead role in "To Kill a Mockingbird” on Broadway. The Harper Lee classic, re-imagined for the stage by celebrated writer Aaron Sorkin, is a challenge that Daniels is determined to conquer every night.

After Daniels won an Emmy Award for the role of Will McAvoy on HBO’s “The Newsroom,” helmed by Sorkin, Sorkin approached him about playing Atticus Finch. “There's a melody” to Sorkin’s writing, Daniels says. “Once you figure that out, then you're kind of in.”

Daniels opens about the deliberate choices he’s made as an actor throughout his career, including this one, and why he wasn’t intimidated by Gregory Peck’s Oscar-winning film role of Atticus Finch.

Watch the full episode to hear more from Daniels on how he prepped for the show and how he somehow avoiding reading “To Kill a Mockingbird” in high school.

Plus, Daniels’ co-star, Celia Keenan-Bolger opens up about being an adult playing the child role of Scout and taking the show on the road to Washington D.C.

About “Salon Talks”

Hosted by Salon journalists, “Salon Talks” episodes offer a fresh take on the long-form interview format, and a much-needed break from the partisan political talking heads that have come to dominate the genre. “Salon Talks” is a destination for information through conversation. Viewers can expect discussions with A-list actors, artists, authors, thinkers, and newsmakers as we explore the full range of the human condition. The show streams live on Facebook and Twitter and each episode is published in full on

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