“Ted Lasso” is in the home stretch as the critically acclaimed Apple TV+ series prepares to complete its three-season run at the end of the month.
In a new interview with The Observer, star Jason Sudeikis reveals how Donald Trump and his political ascendancy proved to be the unlikely inspiration for the award-winning series.
As Sudeikis recalled, back in 2015 he and then-partner Olivia Wilde were discussing how he could revive the Ted Lasso character, first introduced in 2013 in a series of NBC Sports promotional spots for the network’s coverage of Premier League soccer.
According to Sudeikis, his initial portrayal of the character was “belligerent,” but the emerging political atmosphere enflamed by the presidential candidacy of Donald Trump inspired him to flip it upside down.
“It was the culture we were living in,” Sudeikis explained.
“I’m not terribly active online, and it even affected me. Then you have Donald Trump coming down the escalator. I was like, ‘OK, this is silly,’ and then what he unlocked in people… I hated how people weren’t listening to one another. Things became very binary, and I don’t think that’s the way the world works,” Sudeikis continued.
“And, as a new parent — we had our son Otis in 2014 — it was like, ‘Boy, I don’t want to add to this.’ Yeah, I just didn’t want to portray it,” he mused.
While Sudeikis is leaving the door open to revive the character at some point, he’s adamant that “Ted Lasso”, as it’s existed for the past three seasons, is over.
However, he’s also hopeful that the optimistic tone of the show will be mirrored in future projects of those who worked on it.
“That was one thing we spoke about on our final day of filming,” he said. “The show may be over, but what we learned here… It’s not like Vegas: what happened here, stays here. No, what happened here, take it, take it to your village, take it to your family, take it to your next project. For real. Aren’t funerals not always to celebrate the dead, but also to remember you’re alive?”
The series finale of “Ted Lasso” debuts on Wednesday, May 31.