Halle Berry heads to outer space on Wednesday night with the premiere of her new CBS summer drama “Extant.”
In the new series, the Oscar winner plays Molly Woods, an astronaut who returns from a 13-month solo mission in space only to learn from her supervisor, Sam Barton (Camryn Manheim), that she is pregnant. As she struggles to figure out what happened to her, Molly will also be dealing with readjusting to life at home with her husband, John Woods (“ER” alum Goran Visnjic), and her robot son, Ethan (Pierce Gagnon).
Halle spoke with Access Hollywood at a recent CBS press day about her new TV gig.
One of the reasons Halle wanted the role is because she related to Molly as a working mom: “That’s what resonated with me when I read it. I am a mom. I’m a career woman at the same time and that’s what we find when the pilot opens, that’s what our character Molly Woods is. She’s a career mom who’s trying to be mom to a robot. She’s not sure she quite connects to this robot as a mom, but for all practical purposes, her title is ‘mom’ in their family and she’s trying to juggle her family life with her career life,” Halle told Access. “That’s a big element of this character.”
On Molly’s issues regarding her robot son, Ethan: “He’s 8 years old,” Halle said. “It’s set 30 years in the future and [Ethan] is the only [robot child] right now in existence. And my husband, played by Goran Visnjic, John Woods, has created this robot because Molly and John have had fertility issues, and so he thought he was going to give her the greatest gift ever and create this perfect robot child for her and while you would think that would make Molly happy, it slightly horrified her. So she’s trying to learn to love this child that he’s so exuberant about and happy and proud of. She’s trying to learn to love this robot child the best she can.”
On Molly’s marital issues that come up as she tries to readjust to her earth life: “They’re very in love, but [at] the start of our show, Molly had gone away for a year, so imagine the strain that puts on a couple and imagine Molly coming home and having to reenter into the family when they’ve been so used to doing things their way, without her,” Halle said. “There’s challenges, but at the end of the day, I think that these two people really do love each other and what another part of our show is about is them fighting for that love and to keep their family together in the midst of all these things that are going on around them.”
“Extant” premieres Wednesday night at 9/8c on CBS.
-- Jolie Lash