Aaron Sorkin on the ‘Musical Dialogue’ of ‘The Newsroom’

By Alex Weprin 

Vanity Fair previews the upcoming HBO seriesThe Newsroom,” from “West Wing” creator Aaron Sorkin.

Sorkin says that to him, plot is secondary to his style of dialogue:

“I kind of see plot as a necessary intrusion on what I really want to do, which is write musical dialogue,” Sorkin says of his notoriously snappy style of discourse. “So these arguments aren’t me finding sort of a clever way to be politically persuasive. [The news is] just a really rich area for arguing.” He admits, “I’m pretty wordy when I write.”


Meanwhile castmember Emily Mortimer hints that the series will involve some serious sexual tension, though between which members of the cast isn’t readily apparent.

“The problem with romantic comedies nowadays is that they’re not clever and they’re not about anything. Whereas this is very clever and it’s about something. The great writers and directors of the past have understood that sexual tension can be so brilliantly depicted in the way that people talk to each other—Billy Wilder and Cukor knew that, Shakespeare knew that, and Jane Austen knew that. And it’s so rarely investigated these days, partly because the world has to be a world where people talk fast and funny. And one of those worlds is the news.”