Back to IndieWire

Michelle Pfeiffer Says It’s ‘Too Risky’ to Work with ‘Fierce’ Husband David E. Kelley

Don't count on Pfeiffer starring in "Big Little Lies" Season 3 if it ever happens.

David E. Kelley, Michelle Pfeiffer at arrivals for 75th Annual Golden Globe Awards - Arrivals 2, The Beverly Hilton Hotel, Beverly Hills, CA January 7, 2018. Photo By: Dee Cercone/Everett Collection

David E. Kelley and Michelle Pfeiffer


Michelle Pfeiffer will never work with Emmy-winning writer, producer, and showrunner David E. Kelley. Why? Because it’s best for their real-life marriage.

“Big Little Lies” writer Kelley has frequently collaborated with Nicole Kidman on “Nine Perfect Strangers” and “The Undoing.” The mega producer also is behind Netflix’s “Anatomy of a Scandal” and “The Lincoln Lawyer” series, plus the upcoming HBO Max limited series “Love and Death.”

“Nobody writes, honestly, better for women than he does,” Pfeiffer said during “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” April 7. “It’s unbelievable. And yet, I value our relationship more than a good part.”

The “First Lady” star has been married to Kelley since 1993 after their blind date at a bowling alley. But their shared passion for filmmaking is a double-edged sword.

“I just think it’s too risky,” Pfeiffer continued. “We’re both kind of fierce when we work, so if I come home and I’ve had a bad day, and I’m upset about something, I want him to be on my side because he hasn’t heard the other side. There’s value in that.”

And Pfeiffer does invite risk in when it comes to her work, especially when signing on to Marvel films without reading the scripts. “It’s all very mysterious,” Pfeiffer said of the MCU. “It’s a little hard. I knew a little bit about the [‘Ant-Man’] character but there was no script. You have to commit without actually having read anything. It wouldn’t have mattered because it all changes anyway.”

The one thing that doesn’t change, though? Pfeiffer’s love for Kelley, with whom she shares two children.

“It’ll be 29 years this year,” she said of her anniversary with Kelley.

And Pfeiffer previously shared with IndieWire her secret to choosing (non-Kelley penned) roles: “I think I’ve always been kind of choosy, even when I had no business being choosy. I always felt this need to play a variety of different types of characters,” she said in 2021. “I remember early on when — again, I had no business being choosy about anything — I would, within the limited options that I had at the time, always go for something different.”

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: Television and tagged , ,

Get The Latest IndieWire Alerts And Newsletters Delivered Directly To Your Inbox