Memories From the Set: Bradley Whitford Talks Stints on West Wing, ER, Frasier and More

Bradley Whitford Trophy Wife Pete Harrison Memories From the SetAfter nearly three decades on television, Trophy Wife star Bradley Whitford has a stellar bunch of behind-the-scenes stories – like this one, which involves running into his real-life counterpart during a West Wing location shoot at the White House.

“We were shooting on a Saturday, and I had to keep going in and out of the gate. Obviously, that’s some pretty intense security there,” he tells TVLine.

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“The guy who was then Deputy Chief of Staff – which is what [my character] Josh Lyman was – was then a guy named Josh Bolten,” Whitford recalls. “He was coming in on Saturday to do some work, and I’m going back in, and the Secret Service, y’know, they know me. I’ve been in and out, so they just kind of waved me through… and they stopped Josh and went through everything in his bag.”

He laughs, adding, “It was like, ‘Oh, Hollywood? Come on in!'”

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At TVLine’s request, Whitford shared some highlights (and lowlights) from his career so far. Click through the gallery below to hear him spin tales about circumventing wardrobe challenges on NYPD Blue, traumatizing a generation of moms on ER and faking out The Mentalist – as well as which guest star on this Tuesday’s Trophy Wife killed him with comedy.

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24 Comments
  1. Stacey says:

    I so miss West Wing. I wish there could be a movie one day. Or a reunion television special with the whole cast, both the Bartlett and Santos administration. Amazing show. He has had a amazing career. I remember that ER episode.

  2. CourtTV says:

    He is one of my favorite TV actors. That ER episode is so memorable and the West Wing was one of the best serials ever.

  3. Pat says:

    Seen him in a lot, remember the x-files and nypd blue stint. But Adventures in Babysitting and Billy Madison will always stand out.

    • Liz says:

      Lol I know it’s a tv blog, but I was hoping one of the memories would be from Adventures in Babysitting too. It’s one of my favourite movies

  4. Paula says:

    I was halfway through my first pregnancy when that ER episode was on. I wasn’t home that evening and I taped it (old-school VCR taping back then!) The next day everyone I know was calling to tell me NOT to watch that episode. It was a couple years before I finally watched it and I’m glad I waited. That totally would have traumatized me.

  5. Drew says:

    No Good Guys? C’mon! I can’t believe that this one was overlooked.

  6. Shaun says:

    What episode was that NYPD Blue one?XD

  7. Viv says:

    I just did a re-watch on West Wing two weeks ago and… that was one good television show (allthough I´m one of those people that can´t stand seasons 5,6 and especially 7). 5 is okay, but I was never a fan of the whole Santos campaign thing.

  8. Matthew Weber says:

    A great actor on both TV and Movies. I really miss the West Wing. It’s one of my all time favorites. I’ve watched the DVD set so often that I had to replace it.

  9. Sara says:

    I really wish he was Red John, those episodes were amazing.

  10. Patrick says:

    I still miss Studio 60. It had trouble out of the gate, but it found itself fairly quickly. That was one of those very good shows that was canceled too early because the Nets didn’t understand the new math of ratings. It was a time when some shows with huge numbers were still on the air or had just ended. As a result, the nets had expectations for ratings that no longer existed. Those hugely rated shows were holdovers from an era when Cable had no original shows, and the internet was just for temporary entertainment.

    How much would NBC love to have had Studio 60’s rankings for the last decade? How much would Fox love to have Firefly right now? But when they came out, the rankings were horrible. The nets didn’t realize those new numbers were the new normal.

  11. Jo says:

    Trophy Wife is my favorite new series of the season. It’s consistently funny. The song and dance at the end of the Christmas episode had me doubled over with laughter, especially BW’s obvious trouble staying in character. You could tell he was ready to burst out laughing himself. Also, a big fan of WestWing! The Yo-Yo Ma episode was brilliant.

  12. Brooke says:

    I adore Mr. Whitford. The marriage of the talents of Whitford and Whedon in Cabin in the Woods was amazing. West Wing remains one of the best shows ever. It doesn’t look like Trophy Wife will survive with its current ratings, which is a shame because it’s hilarious and has a lot of heart.

  13. nannarpite says:

    What about his role as Dan Stark on ‘The Good Guys’? The show might have been a little ho-hum, but he was hilarious in it.

  14. Amanda says:

    Loved this!!! Bradley is such a great actor and one of my favorites in both TV and movies. “The West Wing” was amazing and one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. Do wish there would’ve been a bit on “Felicity” as he played the character Julie’s birth father. I do remember he was supposed to be on it more but got casted as Josh on “West Wing” so I was hoping to hear what he thought might’ve happened for his character and Julie finally bonding.

  15. Katie says:

    I just watched the west wing for the first time, all 7 seasons in a month with netflix, now suffering from withdrawl…may start on trophy wife or mom just to get my fix

  16. Apples says:

    Great memories from The West Wing. Josh Lyman is one of my fictional heroes.
    .
    Too bad his current series is such a stinker.

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