‘Law & Order: Organized Crime’ Star Dylan McDermott Reveals He Was ‘Dying to Play’ Richard Wheatley

by Samantha Whidden

Just a little over a month after his last episode on “Law & Order: Organized Crime,” Dylan McDermott shares why he was desperate to play Richard Wheatley in the new series. 

“There was just something about Richard that I understood,” Dylan McDermott declares about the “Law & Order” character. “His relationship with his father. And the shame that he felt from being called names as a kid. I was really interested in that upbringing.”

Dylan McDermott further explains what is so interesting about Richard Wheatley to him. “What was the snap that caused him to become a psychopath? I was really interested in his psychology,” the “Law and Order” explained. “Truly, just obsessed with this guy. Everything about him made me obsessed.”

Dylan McDermott also reveals that the “Law & Order” crew originally asked him to play Richard Wheatley for only eight episodes. However, they eventually asked him to do another eight episodes. “I was really happy. I really wasn’t done with Richard. Or he wasn’t done with me. Either way.”

When asked how his upbringing was similar to Richard Wheatley, Dylan McDermott says that as a child, he was studying people. He even admits that other people’s behavior is fascinating to him. It was even before he knew what the word “behavior” actually meant.

Dylan McDermott discusses how growing up around criminals and the gangster world is certainly a real experience. “There’s a difference between acting and knowing. When you know something it’s in your body. It’s in every breath you take. And that’s very different from acting a role. You’re not searching, it’s already there. That’s why I respond to Richard.”

‘Law & Order’ Star Dylan McDermott Reveals What’s More Fun to Play: A Villain or Hero

Following his discussion of playing Richard Wheatley, Dylan McDermott shares his thoughts about what’s more fun to play. A villain or hero. Well, each has the other inside of them,” the “Law & Order” star reflects. “If you’re playing a villain, you’re really looking for a hero. If you’re playing a hero, you’re looking for a villain. People are not just one thing.”

Dylan McDermott also says that people are all just very complex. This means nobody’s just a hero and nobody’s just a villain. “People are not just one thing. Everything is justified in people’s minds. What they do in this life… it’s all justified.”

In regards to switching his role from villain to hero in “FBI: Most Wanted,” Dylan McDermott shares what it was like to start the new role mid-season. “It’s always interesting. Having done this for a while now, I always enjoy walking into new experiences. It’s like walking into a minefield. It’s so dangerous.”

Dylan McDermott went on to add that the most exciting thing for him is being careful and watching every move.