NBC's Chicago PD, a spinoff from Chicago Fire, premiered a couple weeks ago to mixed review. At the Television Critics Association press tour, the cast and executive producer Dick Wolf took to the stage to answers questions about the new series. Jason Beghe, who stars as Hank Voight had a lot to say about his character and why he believes the man isn't as bad as everyone thinks he is.
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Beghe first played Voight in a storyline on Chicago Fire. His character was a dirty cop who threatened Casey after Casey dared to act as a witness when Voight's son caused an accident while driving drunk. Things quickly spun out of control on Chicago Fire, but on Chicago PD viewers discovered that Voight's behavior was all part of a massive undercover operation.
Asked about the evolution of his character, Beghe quickly defended Voight and said the man did everything he did to protect his son.
"I think the first thing [the writers] said was, 'Oh, you're a bad guy.' I said, 'No, he's not.' Because you have to understand it's all from a viewpoint. To me, if you look at it from Casey's viewpoint, he's a bad guy. From Voight's viewpoint, his son's in trouble. He's got a job as a policeman. His son's going to go to jail. I know that he's done some bad things and I'm willing to take some responsibility. Imagine the consequence of my son going to jail, Hank Voight's son going to jail with all the people that Hank Voight put away. If that was your son - is justice that he's raped to death? So I always just try to find the reality of the guy, so nobody's bad or good. There's a white hat in everybody's closet."
Actress Sophia Bush, who plays Erin Lindsay, also talked about Voight and his part in saving Lindsay's life. "It's been very exciting. We're peeling back the depth of that history more like an onion rather than just revealing it all at once and to give the audience hints as to Voight having saved Lindsay's life. There's a lot more information coming there."
Beghe added, "prior to having met Casey, [Voight] helped this little girl and he took her into his home and raised her and put her in a private school. One of the things that I find interesting about the show is that nobody's who they seem to be. Nobody's this guy. You're not that guy. Everybody's a lot of things in a lot of different situations."
Wolf added, "He's good cop, bad cop in one cop."
That seems to sum up the Voight character perfectly.
What do you think of Voight in Chicago PD? Do you still see him as the bad guy from Chicago Fire or a guy who has been misunderstood?
Chicago PD airs on Wednesday nights at 10:00pm on NBC.
(Image courtesy of NBC)