Suits’ Mike Ross is about to meet his worst nightmare. Her name is Anita Gibbs, and she’s a ball-busting Assistant United States Attorney played by talented actress Leslie Hope (24, Line of Fire). At the USA Network drama’s Los Angeles premiere Thursday, LA Fan Cultures Examiner spoke to Leslie about playing the woman gunning to send Mike to prison.
“I had a great time,” she said of her guest role over the remaining six episodes that will finish out Season 5. “[It’s] not a bad day at work going toe to toe with Gabriel [Macht] or Patrick [J. Adams]. Both handsome, lovely men and I had a great time with them. And I had a fabulous wardrobe, I’m just saying, so that helped what I had to do.”
What she had to do was be the biggest threat that either Mike or Harvey have ever seen over the entire series. Suits has had its fair share of tough opponents, but from her first episode tomorrow, Gibbs makes it clear that she’s not going to rest until Mike is in prison for several decades after committing five seasons’ worth of fraud. In the midseason premiere “Blowback,” she even manages to blindside Harvey. So is there anything that she won’t do to win?
“I don’t think she’d break a really big law,” Leslie said. “She might push up against the boundaries of ethics and legalities, but I think she’s driven by doing the right thing. She actually believes she’s on the right side.”
“She thinks she’s ethical and morally sound and has integrity,” she continued, “and is basically doing something for not only this particular case that she wants to bring to a close, but the country.”
To accomplish her goal of exposing Mike, Gibbs is willing to get leverage anywhere that she can find it. That means digging into the pasts of all the main characters. Rachel’s father, Donna’s father and several ex-love interests will all make reappearances in the final six episodes this season as everyone is leaned on. As Leslie explained, “It’s a Halloween party of skeletons.”
For the actress herself, best known for her role as the ill-fated Teri Bauer in the first season of FOX’s real-time thriller 24, the role is showing off the ball-busting side that she never gets to play enough (aside from her starring role as a tough-as-nails FBI agent in ABC’s crime drama Line of Fire). It was also a bit of a homecoming.
“I’m really happy to be filming in Toronto which is where I live now. I’m Canadian,” she told us. “So for me on a personal level, it’s glorious to be at home working on a show like this.”
Yet as Anita Gibbs is about to become the woman that Suits fans will love to hate, the most important thing for Leslie is that the character is distinct from all the other opposing attorneys who have plagued Mike and Harvey in seasons past. She’s not simply out for herself or revenge or her own company. There’s something more at work here – something that’s factually correct – and that’s what makes her terrifying.
“I’ve been characterized as sort of this big badass on the show,” Leslie said, “but I believe this woman is not just a two-dimensional villain. I hope I bring to life that she’s a driven by a sense of doing the right thing.”
Suits returns Wednesday, Jan. 27 at 10 p.m. on USA.