Created by Aaron Sorkin, the Golden Globe-nominated HBO drama series The Newsroom follows the "News Night" team on their quixotic mission to do the news well in the face of a fickle audience, corporate mandates and tangled personal relationships.
It's a year later, and in the days leading up to election night 2012, the "News Night" staff is being prepared to give depositions in a lawsuit - the circumstances of which unfold throughout the season. A mysterious tip has led to the airing of a story with consequences no one could have anticipated.
The series is set at the fictional cable network ACN, but the news stories covered in the "News Night" cablecast are often actual past news events, or are inspired by them.
The Newsroom offers viewers an opportunity to return to and relive the news that made headlines as they watch it unfold for the show's characters, who race to put together the broadcast.
Covering the period from August 2011 to November 2012, the second season touches on the administration's anti-terrorism policy, Occupy Wall Street, Troy Davis, Trayvon Martin, Benghazi and, of course, the primaries and general election.
Jeff Daniels stars as Will McAvoy and Emily Mortimer stars as Mackenzie McHale, the show's executive producer.
Other returning cast regulars for the second season are: John Gallagher, Jr. as Jim Harper, Mackenzie's loyal producer, currently covering the Romney campaign; Alison Pill as associate producer Maggie Jordan; Thomas Sadoski as Don Keefer, Will's former executive producer; Dev Patel as resourceful self-made newsman Neal Sampat; Olivia Munn as financial news analyst Sloan Sabbith; and Sam Waterston as Charlie Skinner, Will's old-school boss.
Returning guests for season two include Jane Fonda as Leona Lansing, the CEO of ACN's parent company, Atlantis World Media; and Hope Davis as gossip columnist Nina Howard.
New to the guest cast in season two are Marcia Gay Harden as Rebecca Halliday, a lawyer hired to defend ACN staffers in its wrongful-termination case; Hamish Linklater as Jerry Dantana, who temporarily replaces Jim when he leaves to cover the Romney campaign; Grace Gummer as Hallie Shea, a reporter competing with Jim on the Romney campaign; and Constance Zimmer as Taylor Warren, a Romney campaign press spokesperson who questions the coverage her campaign is getting from the media.
In the Season 2 premiere, "First Thing We Do, Let's Kill All the Lawyers": Will and the News Night staff are questioned by their lawyer about a story they've aired that's become a network crisis.
An on-air remark by Will has him pulled from 9/11 anniversary coverage.
Jim volunteers to cover for an embed reporter on the Romney campaign and Neal investigates the beginnings of Occupy Wall Street.
The Newsroom was created by Aaron Sorkin; executive producers, Aaron Sorkin, Scott Rudin and Alan Poul; co-executive producer, Denis Biggs; consulting producers, Jon Harmon Feldman and Nancy Pimental; co-producers, Lauren Lohman and Eli Bush; casting director, Nancy Perkins.