Exclusive: ER Vet Laura Innes Cops Major Role on NBC's Awake

ER vet and three-time Emmy nominee Laura Innes has landed a major recurring role on Awake, one of NBC’s two buzzy midseason dramas, TVLine has learned exclusively. Innes will also direct one or two episodes of the ambitious series.

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Awake stars Jason Isaacs (Brotherhood) as Michael Britten, a police detective who in the wake of a tragic car accident finds himself toggling between two realities — one in which his wife (Terriers‘ Laura Allen) died in the crash, and another in which their teenage son (Lost‘s Dylan Minnette) instead perished.

Innes will play Captain Tricia Harper, Michael’s “walk softly and carry a big stick”-style superior at the PD. A former detective herself, she is described as smart and compassionate — especially when it comes to having concerns about the mourning Michael’s well-being.

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Whether Harper is Michael’s boss in the “red” reality, where his wife is alive, and/or the “green” one is being kept under wraps for now. (Some of the show’s characters occupy slightly different roles, or are absent altogether, from reality to reality. For example, 24‘s Cherry Jones is Michael’s shrink on one “side,” while SVU‘s B.D. Wong handles that responsibility on the other.)

In addition to her 12-year run as ER‘s Dr. Kerry Weaver, Innes’ TV credits include, most recently, NBC’s The Event, plus Wings and The Louie Show.

Along with Debra Messing’s Smash, Awake is one of two NBC midseason shows earning strong word-of-mouth — and deservedly so — prior to the 2011-12 TV season launch. Until then, watch a preview for Awake here:

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  1. ScrubsGuy says:

    Not sure why NBC is holding this until mid-season, but the wait is painful! The up-front trailer was easily one of the best I have ever seen.

    Hope it doesn’t end up like Lonestar or The Chicago Code.

    • Eli says:

      There will be a flood of new shows this fall. At least this way it will be given its moment to shine!

      I think the concept would work better as a movie. People will start complaining about wanting to know which reality is the true one before the end of the first season! And then revealing it may kill the show/not revealing the truth will get people bored. I personally love a long-running mystery but I believe most people are not like me (see The Killing.)

  2. Andie says:

    I’m so excited about this show. I’m hoping they only held it to make it even more awesome and not because of problems. NBC is generally kinder to newer shows than most networks, so hopefully they’ll give it a chance.

  3. the girl says:

    I love this trailer, it is so gut-wrenchingly beautiful. I have never wanted to watch a new show as badly as I want to watch this.

  4. Brooke says:

    BD Wong is playing a shrink again? That’s kind of funny.

    This show looks so good, I’m really sad they’re waiting until mid-season.

  5. Ritchie says:

    I had the opportunity to preview the pilot at a test screening and the show was pretty awesome. I am looking forward to seeing what happens next.

  6. ultimate troll says:

    This is easily the new show I am looking forward to most. That trailer sold me a couple months ago and it still does. Can’t wait to see how the complete show looks.
    Kind of interested in how they work in the police stuff but hoping that the emotional power and back & forth of realities are the real driving forces of the show.

  7. Dee says:

    Lucious Malfoy, yummy.

    The premise is interesting. Will look for it when it does appear on my tv screen.

  8. kevin says:

    Truly disappointed when THE EVENT got cancelled the same way Flash Forward did over on ABC.

  9. Napoleon Solo says:

    AWAKE could be fantastic – sure hope so. “Toggling between realities,” hmm. That’s a concept. DO agree – its very hard to wait until (yet again!) AFTER the entire N F L football season is over with (not to mention – ugh — Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, Post-Christmas Clearance sales, all of that — )

    BEFORE we get to see the much anticipated show, AWAKE. As a consolation prize, “Prime Suspect,” will be showing up on TV soon. Hope there are no more stock market crashes in the meantime. That would be a bummer.


  10. Romain says:

    Awake looks absolutely amazing from the trailer and I’m really looking forward to it. I am more than happy to see several former ER stars making their big returns to the small screen. After Julianna Margulies on The Good Wife and Noah Wyle on Falling Skies, this season will give us Maria Bello on Prime Suspect, Parminder Nagra on Alcatraz, Eriq La Salle on A Gifted Man and Laura Innes on Awake. Someone please bring Maura Tierney, Linda Cardellini and Kellie Martin back to our TV screens!

  11. ed says:

    Cool looking show, and yay for Cherry Jones as the other shrink plus Innes as a Captain. But I worry about the concept successfully surviving a full season and into a second, although one never knows how anything will do in the ratings, so who cares? I’ll give it a shot.

  12. tazzy says:

    Really looking forward to this show!

  13. christine says:

    This is one of the shows I am most looking forward to. I wish they weren’t waiting until mid season to put it on, but I guess thats better than putting it on now and then taking it off the air for # months to work out the kinks. This show has so much promise that I am more than willing to wait for it to be perfect so that it really stands a chance.

  14. Nadja Vuckevic says:

    I am thrilled to see Laura Innes back this season, though I had hoped it would be in The Event. I am still sooooo disappointed that it was cancelled! The ONLY reason I am watching “Awake”, another NBC show is because Laura Innes is on the show!!!
    Given NBC’s past track record of cancelling shows without even giving them a chance, I don’t hold out much hope of “Awake” getting renewed for a second season (or even finishing a first) although for the sake of seeing Laura Innes, I sure hope it does!!!

  15. Jacob Bauer says:

    I really hope that NBC likes the show and wants it to be a success. That will be 75% of the factor of whether or not Awake lives or not.

    Jacob Bauer
    Awake Fan Central