Swept away by the drama of Robert Downey Jr.'s departure from Ally McBeal last season, many overlooked the quiet exit of James LeGros. As the blue-eyed actor who played lawyer Mark Albert tells TV Guide Online: "It was a hugely dramatic year! But you know what? For me, it was a really good way to leave... very quietly. I'm grateful that's how it was done.
"Ultimately, your goals and those of the people who make the show don't always go the same way," he adds diplomatically. "They treated me well. I don't miss doing the show, but I do miss the people."
Some Ally aficionados felt cheated by the failed romance of Mark and his transsexual lady love, Cindy (Lisa Edelstein). While he fondly recalls their storyline, LeGros hates that Cindy revealed her, um, concealed weapon to Mark by grinding up against him on a dance floor, saying, "Surprise!"
"I know they revealed her mystery the way they did for comic purposes," he says. "But that was the only thing I had a little bit of regret about. I don't think that that would've happened. It just kind of smacked a little bit of a device. I felt Lisa Edelstein had wrought a character of such integrity, it could've been more tactfully done."
There's off-kilter comedy aplenty in LeGros's new indie movie, Scotland, PA (opening Friday). The quirky satire of Shakespeare's Macbeth finds him and ER's Maura Tierney playing the McBeths, a conniving couple who murder their way to the top of the food chain at a drive-thru burger joint. Set in the early '70s, Scotland finds LeGros wearing eye-poppingly tight jeans and an enormous hairdo!
"That was a wig," he laughs. "I think I was going for a Warren Beatty
look." And what about those mean jeans, James? (They make Ally
's aforementioned "surprise" look downright tame!) "I had to cover my body with Vaseline and take a plunge from a second-story window to get into those," he cracks. "My opinion is, if the hair is right, the performance and everything else falls into place. But yeah, that's what we liked about Joe McBeth nice hair and nice package."