As if Edie Falco's drug-addled character Nurse Jackie wasn't juggling enough in her personal life, now comes Dr. Fitch Cooper (Peter Facinelli) trying to get into the mix.
Yes, you heard us. The strained relationship between the seemingly clueless Dr. Coop and the tough-as-nails, double-life-leading Jackie is about to turn an odd corner in episode 10 (titled "Ring Finger"), airing Aug. 10. We don't want to spoil it, so we'll let Peter do the talking...
You have some heated scenes with Edie Falco coming up and the big surprise happening in episode 10. I know we don't want to give it away to the viewers, but what can you say about it?
Yes, in Coop's world, he starts to develop a little something for her. I don't want to say where it goes, but somewhere along the lines romantically in Coop's world, Jackie and he should be together.
Meanwhile, though, you do get a girlfriend on the show soon. The lovely Jill Flint, who plays Jill Casey on Royal Pains and Bex on Gossip Girl.
Yes. I do have a little girlfriend coming on soon, and it becomes very difficult emotionally after he decides that he and Jackie should be together. She's great. I like the stuff with me and the girlfriend. It's fun stuff because he's so socially inept with any kind of relationship and yet he doesn't know it. I feel sorry for him in a funny kind of way.
What do you love about Dr. Cooper?
I find him very sympathetic. I feel he's very lonely and there are a lot of layers to the guy. On the surface, especially in the first few episodes, people think he's a jerk, but deep down, he's—and I'm hoping as the series grows people find out that—he's just really lonely. He doesn't have many friends, and he just wants to be liked by everybody. He tries so hard for people to like him, and he doesn't even realize that they don't like him because he's so oblivious.
Is there any part of him that is like you at all?
I hope not. [Laughs] But I'm a people-pleaser, and I like to have people like me, so I get that about him. But I like to think I'm a little more aware of my surroundings than he is. I liken him to a puppy that walks into a room of dog-haters and is wagging his tail all happy and running around to everyone like they're all his friends and like they think he's the cutest thing in the world but no one likes him.
You play a very different kind of doctor in the Twilight films, Dr. Carlisle Cullen. Did you have any hesitation about taking another doctor role?
No, because it's just an occupation. I actually thought it was more interesting to play another doctor and show how different each experience can be. Same occupation, two different characters and be completely different. I always play the person, not the occupation. It's apples an oranges. Both are fun to play. The contrast between the two visually and in their characters, that's what's fun for me as an actor.
Nurse Jackie airs Monday nights on Showtime, while the new Twilight movie, The Twilight Saga: New Moon, is out in November. Check back next week for part two of our interview with Peter Facinelli.
Do you think Dr. Cooper and Nurse Jackie should hook up? Sound off in the comments below. And check out our Then & Now photo gallery featuring Edie Falco.