Scott Bakula’s is dialed back from what we heard in the pilot episodes. Lucas Black’s is not.
Nothing irks/delights local viewers more than picking on the accents in screen depictions of Louisiana life, and Bakula’s effort to nail it in the two earlier pilot episodes was no exception. The veteran actor worked with dialog coach Jessica Drake to prepare for the role.
“I showed up at the first read-through and (the accent) was full-on,” Bakula said during the episodes’ local production shoot. “And they were like, ‘Whoa.’ I showed up at the first table-read with everything in the bucket, and they were like, ‘No. It’s too much.’ And so I thought, ‘OK, I’ll back up.’ And then it became harder, when you’re picking and choosing where to soften that, or try that.
“The trick is to make it palatable for everybody. It can’t be so heavy that people can’t understand it, or be turned off by it.
“I get that (New Orleans viewers) want it to be true and honest.”
The subtle evolution continues Tuesday night, to my ear at least, based on CBS’ preview screener of the episode.
Black’s accent, on the other hand, is thick as ever. That’s because he, like his character Christopher LaSalle, is an Alabama native. That’s how he talks. Though his fellow actors have joked with him that that subtitles might be necessary, it’s how he’s going to talk.