Medical dramas are a dime a dozen in American television. Few things are as compelling as a group of brilliant and capable (as well as good-looking) doctors save lives while navigating through their personal dramas. While The Resident has plenty of those medical drama staples, it offers something that few — if not none — of the other shows have: the bottom line of the American health institutions. As Bruce Greenwood, who plays Dr. Randolph Bell, says in an exclusive interview, “[There is] a vast disconnect between medicine and money, and how care is controlled by commerce to a large degree.” And this is what the show shines a light on.
Greenwood’s character, Dr. Bell, is the CEO and Chief of Surgery of the fictional Chastain Park Memorial Hospital. His character was introduced in Season 1 as the image of the ideal surgeon, and the one person everyone would want to be in charge of their health care. But he has a secret medical condition that causes tremors on his hands and it couldn’t be denied that his mortality rates have steadily risen, thereby earning him the nickname HODAD, “Hands of Death and Destruction.” He is also not above bending the rules to get what he wants.
Greenwood is a veteran actor who has played his share of complex characters, and he finds Dr. Bell’s profound sense of entitlement and narcissism intriguing. There are also times when he thought that Dr. Bell would be going to on a certain direction, only to be surprised by the twists in the next script. “Sometimes it becomes a roller coaster but that also is what makes it fun because it’s a challenge to justify some of the things that happened [in the story].” He adds, “Sometimes people do very implausible things and you just have to roll with that and examine it later. It’s not unlike when you make a decision in your life and it turns out to be a bad decision, you don’t realize that it’s a bad decision until a little bit later. So sometimes you don’t have to justify behavior as much as look at it later and try to unravel how and why it occurred.”
Now that the viewers are more acquainted to the cast of characters in The Resident, Greenwood shares that Season 2 would take the audience even deeper into the homes of the characters and learn more about them beyond the doors of the hospital. “We’re going to be more involved in the personal lives of the characters, and some of the mistakes that happened, some of the decisions that Bell made last year will haunt him this year,” he says.
Behind the scenes, the cast have sufficiently bonded. “They’re really, really good people,” Greenwood shares. “They tell jokes, everybody enjoys being there, enjoys one another’s company, and they all have fun trying to make it as fun as you can everyday and the crew is the same way.”
He also adds that he hears that The Resident has been a hit with the Filipino audiences, he'd like to come and visit. “I’ve never been, so let’s find an excuse for me to come down there and pretend to be a doctor. I would love to come down there!”
Stream season 1 and catch the exclusive new season of The Resident on FOX+ in selected territories.