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How Sam Waterston Helped Calm Odelya Halevi's Nerves On Law & Order

When "Law and Order" returned to television in 2022 after 12 years off the air, legacy cast members Anthony Anderson (Detective Kevin Bernard) and Sam Waterston (DA Jack McCoy) returned to the show to help usher in its new cast members. Waterston couldn't be happier about playing that role. "I get to hand over the torch and stay in the game both at the same time," Waterston said in an appearance on "The View."

One of the new actors brought on for the reboot is Odelya Halevi, who plays ADA Samantha Maroun. Her character works for Waterston's character, so the two naturally appear together quite a bit on the show. In an interview with Looper, Halevi talked a little bit about working with Waterston and said that he's a very good listener who really "cares about people's stories" and that he's always fun to be around because he's always in a good mood.

In that Looper interview, Halevi was asked if anyone took her under their wing, and she specifically talked about Waterston. "We really had good laugh therapy and chemistry since the beginning," she said of her relationship with the "Law and Order" veteran. In another interview, she told the story of how Waterston helped her calm her nerves when she first got to set.

Sam Waterston told Odelya Halevi that they're there to have fun

In an interview with Cinema Blend, Odelya Halevi talked about how she was very intimidated to be working with a legend like Sam Waterston. The "Law and Order" star noticed and was able to tell her something that calmed her nerves from that point on. "We're here to have fun also," Halevi recalls Waterston telling her. "We tell serious stories, but we're here to have fun." Halevi said that she never stopped taking her co-star's advice: "...and we've been having fun since then." It really seems that Waterston has taken on a sort of mentor role with Halevi and has helped her acclimate to the show.

In an interview with TV Fanatic, Halevi explained that she's been watching the show since she was very young and had originally thought she wanted to be a lawyer, but her mother convinced her she'd rather be a lawyer on TV. She told a similar story when she was interviewed for StageRightSecrets, and emphasized how much Waterston in particular meant to her when she was growing up. "Sam was everything to me when I was younger," she said. She also said that he seems like "he's someone that you would want to represent you if you ever got in trouble," though Waterston plays a prosecutor. Given how much she adored the show and Waterston's portrayal of Jack McCoy, it's no wonder that Halevi found herself so starstruck when she first got a chance to meet Waterston. It's heartwarming to know that he was so helpful to his new co-star.