An Alternate Universe: Who Could Have Played Dr. Goodwin in New Amsterdam?
New Amsterdam, a medical drama that premiered on NBC in September 2018, quickly became a fan favorite. It stood up to some of the most popular medical dramas on television at the time, such as Grey’s Anatomy, The Resident, and Chicago Med. The plot revolves around the titular New York City hospital, which is one of the oldest public hospitals in the country. The hospital’s new medical director, Dr. Max Goodwin, played by Ryan Eggold, is determined to rebuild the facility against all odds for the sake of their patients.
Ryan Eggold played the character of Max Goodwin to perfection, but it’s interesting to wonder what the show could have looked like if the creators had gone in a different direction and cast a different actor in the leading role. As the series has now ended, let’s take a moment to imagine an alternate universe where four other talented and handsome actors could have played the role of Dr. Goodwin, and how that would have impacted the show.
Before landing his Emmy-nominated co-starring role on The White Lotus season 2, Theo James had already made a name for himself in the entertainment industry. However, it wasn’t until his breakthrough moment as Four in the Divergent movie series that he gained widespread recognition. Prior to that, James had appeared on television shows such as the British supernatural drama Bedlam and the CBS crime drama Golden Boy.
Had it not been for his commitment to the first season of the British historical drama Sanditon and some movie projects he was working on at the time, James could have been a strong contender for the role of Dr. Max Goodwin, the protagonist of the NBC medical drama “New Amsterdam”. The character requires a unique balance of inherent likability and grit, which James has proven to possess in his previous performances.
Despite missing out on the opportunity to play Dr. Max Goodwin, James further cemented his position as a versatile actor by returning to television in 2022 with roles in two HBO titles: The Time Traveler’s Wife and The White Lotus.
Fans of The CW’s telenovela satire Jane the Virgin will undoubtedly remember Justin Baldoni’s captivating performance as Rafael Solano. Throughout all five seasons of the show, the actor portrayed Jane’s boss and love interest who ultimately becomes the father of her child. Baldoni’s portrayal of the male lead was nothing short of incredible, and it’s safe to say that he could have easily taken on the role of the leading star in a medical drama like New Amsterdam. As the charming and charismatic Max, he would have brought all the necessary qualities to the character, including a great chemistry with Dr. Goodwin’s various romantic interests.
Baldoni’s history in romantic dramas would have made him a perfect fit for the show’s romantic storylines, and as a father both on and off-screen, he would have had no trouble nailing the role of a dedicated parent. Despite Jane the Virgin’s conclusion in 2019, after which New Amsterdam was already in its second season, Baldoni has since focused on directing movies, including Five Feet Apart, Clouds, and the upcoming It Ends With Us.
Ian Harding is an American actor who gained immense popularity for his role in the ABC Family/Freeform teen drama series, Pretty Little Liars. He played the character of Ezra Fitz, a teacher who eventually married Lucy Hale’s character, Aria. The series aired for 124 episodes, and Ian’s portrayal of the character received critical acclaim.
Given his talent and acting skills, it’s not difficult to imagine Ian auditioning for numerous roles in the entertainment industry. On the other hand, Scott Porter is also a well-known actor who has made a name for himself in the small screen industry. His performances in Friday Night Lights and Hart of Dixie were highly appreciated by audiences worldwide.
While Scott played a lawyer in the popular TV series, Hart of Dixie, it’s not a far stretch to envision him playing a compassionate doctor with a never-say-die attitude. Moreover, his experience working with NBC on Friday Night Lights would have been an added advantage had he been cast as the lead on New Amsterdam. Although Ryan Eggold was ultimately chosen for the role of Max in the series, Scott Porter and other actors could have easily been a close second choice.
All five seasons of New Amsterdam are available to stream on Netflix.