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Interview with John Marshall Jones
It was very nice to speak with "JJ."
He has such a great, deep voice. And wow, what a busy man he
Here is the
Suzanne: What is your role
in The Morning Show?
JJ: I play the role of Noah
Jones, who is the executive producer of the South East News
Network, which is where Reese Witherspoon is working in West
Suzanne: Is that where the - I haven't
watched it yet - is that where the show takes place?
JJ: Most of the show takes place in New York. Reese
starts off her journey in West Virginia and has a viral
video moment that gets her called to New York, and when she
gets to New York, all kinds of dramatic things are happening
that move her from being a field correspondent in West
Virginia to sitting on the desk of the biggest morning news
show in the world.
Suzanne: Okay, wow. So how many
episodes are you in?
JJ: I'm in the pilot
Suzanne: Okay. Now, you've worked with
Reese Witherspoon before, right, in Big Little Lies?
JJ: I did.
Suzanne: What is it like to
work with her?
Well, Reese is a consummate professional. She is a concerned
and devoted mom, she is both a leader, a spokesperson for
the cause of women's empowerment, and just a really, really
impressive person to be around.
Suzanne: Oh, that's
great. You have such a nice deep voice. Have you done any
JJ: Oh, I have.
Suzanne: I figured you must have.
Suzanne: You've been in some of my favorite shows, like
Grand Hotel, Big Little Lies, Bosch, The Mentalist, John
Doe. Which role do you get recognized for most?
JJ: Well, I get recognized most for the role of Floyd
Henderson, who was the dad on the long-running hit show
Suzanne: Oh, still? Wow.
JJ: Which just came out again on the new channel, Disney+.
Suzanne: Ah, okay. That explains it.
So people around the world can now see both their favorite
episodes from before, and a whole new generation of kids can
now discover Smart Guy.
Suzanne: Oh, that's great.
JJ: On Disney+.
Suzanne: Yeah, I
remember that show. I actually really loved Grand Hotel, and
I was annoyed that they canceled it, but I liked your
character. When you filmed that show, did you know from the
beginning that you were going to turn out to be the
JJ: No. No, I didn't. I didn't find
that out until really the day that we shot it.
JJ: Yeah. No, I didn't know.
Suzanne: That's great.
JJ: And I was
really surprised. I was like, "Oh, I did it."
Suzanne: That's funny. So tell us about your new show, Paradise
Lost, and your character.
JJ: Oh, well,
Paradise Lost is a mystery suspense show set in the deep
rural South, in a completely corrupt Southern town. My
character, known as Uncle Ronnie, has been in prison for 15
years for a crime he didn't commit. And now his niece, who
has become a newspaper reporter, is digging up all the old
facts from the crime in order to exonerate me, and I'm
afraid that if she digs up all these old facts, she's going
to dig up all my old enemies and that she'll be in danger.
So I'm trying to stop her from doing it, but she is doggedly
determined to get me out of prison, because she is the last
person on earth besides me that believes in my innocence.
Suzanne: Wow, that sounds like a good show.
JJ: Yeah. Yeah, it does, and I'm very excited about
Suzanne: Okay. When does that come out?
JJ: I think it's coming out in the beginning of the
Suzanne: Okay, and you're also in this
Sam Raimi anthology series, 50 Stages of Fright?
JJ: 50 States of Terror, is what it will be called
Suzanne: Oh, 50 States of Terror. Okay.
JJ: But yes, I'm in the pilot of that with Rachel
Brosnahan from Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, and with Travis Fimmel
from the Vikings. It's a really, really good piece.
Suzanne: It's an anthology, so does that mean you're just
in one episode, or...?
JJ: Correct. I'm in the
pilot of that also.
Suzanne: Okay, good. Well you,
they seem to like using you to kick things off.
JJ: [Laughs] Yeah, that appears how it's working out right
Suzanne: So, anything else that you've got
going on that you can tell us about?
I have a a project called Kappa League TV on YouTube. Kappa
League is the oldest and most successful African American
male mentorship program in the country. It's almost a
hundred years old, it will be a hundred years old in 2022,
and so we're using Kappa League TV to create a larger media
footprint around this incredible mentorship program. The
program has a goal now of getting 140,000 young black men
accepted to historically black colleges over a 10 year
period. We're working diligently with that.
Suzanne: Oh, great.
JJ: And that's, again, if people
wanted to see it, they can go to kappaleague.tv and that
will take them right to our channel.
great. You seem very busy.
JJ: Yeah. You know,
you get to a certain point in life and career where you
asked to be busy and be working all the time, and now it's
happening. And so I just embrace it and try to go to bed
early and get up early and get it all done that I can over
the course of the day.
Suzanne: What do you do for
fun when you're not working?
JJ: You know, I
like to watch movies. I like to work out, but I like to work
out outside. I don't want to be in a gym. I want to be out
in the open air, maybe down at the park, just someplace
where I can breathe in the environment and not be sitting in
front of the computer. You know, like sitting on a bike
looking at a computer, I don't want to do that. I get bored
with that. But if I can walk for an hour in the sand on the
beach, then that's a good enough workout for me.
Suzanne: That sounds good.
JJ: Yeah, yeah.
Suzanne: All right, well I appreciate your calling me.
JJ: Oh, absolutely. And again, I apologize for
the missed connection, but definitely look forward to
checking out your site.
Suzanne: All right. Thank
you. No worries, talk to you later.
Take care. Bye-bye.
Suzanne: Take care. Bye-bye.
Critically acclaimed TV and film renaissance man
Jones ("JJ"), best known as the loving father
from the 90's hit comedy show "Smart
Guy," is slated to make a
dynamic return to television opposite Josh Hartnett and
Bridget Regan in Paramount Network/Spectrum Originals'
highly anticipated new drama series "Paradise Lost." Set
in a small town in Mississippi, the Southern Gothic
drama follows the tale of a psychiatrist who moves with
her family from California to her husband's hometown,
only to uncover shameful secrets that irrevocably change
the lives of everyone involved. A complex and compelling
series, Jones will star as the captive 'Uncle Ronny,'
who begins the series in jail for a crime he didn't
commit. Helmed by Josh Hartnett (PEARL HARBOR) and
Bridget Regan ("Jane the Virgin"), Jones is set to also
co-executive produce the series with Rhodes Fishburne as
the showrunner. Along with "Paradise Lost,"Jones will
make appearances opposite Jennifer Aniston, Reese
Witherspoon and Steve Carell in
"The Morning Show" (premiering November 1st
on AppleTV+) and the Quibi/Sam Raimi directed
anthology series "50 States of Fright" (premiering in
2020) alongside Rachel Brosnahan, Christina Ricci
and Taissa Farmiga.
Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Jones received his BA in Theatre Arts
from Northwestern University; after graduation, he moved
to Chicago and began his career in entertainment with
Second City Theatre, touring all over the United States
and Canada. Best known for his role as 'Floyd
Henderson', the loving father from the 90's hit show "Smart
Guy," John Marshall Jones has
worked with such stars as Oscar winners Sean Penn, Helen
Hunt, Jamie Foxx, Forrest Whittaker, Robin Williams and
Steve Martin. Most recently, he starred as 'Special
Agent Jay Griffin' on Amazon's hit police procedural
series "Bosch" and as 'Pickle' on the fourth and final
season of the Sundance TV original drama series,
"Rectify." Jones has graced our screens with over
10 television series, 20 feature films, has made over
100 television episodic appearances, and made
appearances on "Big Little Lies," "9-1-1," "The
Fosters," "Shameless," "Glee," "Pretty Little Liars,"
"Bones," "NCIS" and the feature film, THE CURSE OF LA
If that wasn't enough, John Marshall Jones is an
award-winning theater actor as well, having won "Best
Actor" at New York's African American Theater Awards in
2008. He recently completed the successful off-Broadway
run of "The Guest at Central Park West" for which he won
the Audelco Award for "Best Actor in a Theatrical
Performance". As a producer, Jones was nominated for
"Favorite Film Pitch" at the People's Choice Awards in
2011, and most recently produced the feature film, THE
LAST REVOLUTIONARY by Levy Lee Simon.
When he is not acting and producing, Jones has
maintained a strong connection to his Kappa Alpha Psi
Fraternity,serving as spokesperson for the Kappa
League,an outreach organization which focuses on
training young men of color from 6th-12th grade for
leadership roles. Jones then helped launch KAPPA LEAGUE
TV in 2019, which utilizes the power of social media to
aid in telling the stories of Kappa young men, for which
Jones is the national spokesperson and dedicated to
giving back to his community.
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Page updated 11/15/19