'Suits' Creator Aaron Korsh On Season 5 And Breaking Into Show Business
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'Suits' Creator Aaron Korsh On Season 5 And Breaking Into Show Business

'Suits' Creator Aaron Korsh On Season 5 And Breaking Into Show Business

Warning: Potential spoilers ahead!

The fifth season of the USA hit series "Suits" is underway, and we caught up with the show’s creator, producer, and writer (as well as fellow Penn alum), Aaron Korsh, to discuss what fans can look forward to in upcoming episodes as well as his personal experiences in show business:

1. Was it always been the plan to separate Harvey and Donna?

We come into the season with ideas and get a feel of what seems right. Last year, we wanted to explore what would happen when Donna plays a big role in a case and gets in trouble, which causes [Harvey and Donna] to talk about their feelings. Plus, Donna had been building her relationship with Louis for several seasons.

2. How much of the storyline do you plan in advance?

We go into a season with a ton of ideas. For example, for the first season, the original plan was for Grammy to die by the finale and then for Mike to smoke pot for the first time as a result. Things get pushed up or pulled back, however. At the beginning of the year, we plan the whole season up to episode 10, since we shoot 16 episode seasons with a mid-season break. By episode 10, we end up exhausting a lot of our early ideas, so we often scramble to decide what to do for the last six.

3. How long do you see the series going? Do you have any ideas for how the show will end?

Practically, seven or eight seasons is a reasonable minimum. We have no idea how it’ll end. The show itself has changed a lot of from my original idea, which had Mike pretending to have gone to Harvard but not as a complete fraud. The premise was based on my own experiences from when I worked on Wall Street for a guy named Harvey, and I was writing scripts just to get jobs. Never in a million years did I think it would sell.

4. In the writers’ room, do you take into account what fans are saying?

The writers’ room is comprised of over six writers, so anything mainstream that a fan is saying, one of the writers has probably come up with the same idea already. We hear fans as a process, but we don’t do something just because they want us to do it. When that happens, you’ve lost your way.

5. Mike’s fraud was a huge plot point in previous seasons but seems to be on the backburner right now—will it ever come back as an issue?

Mike’s fraud comes and goes, and we try to approach it realistically, like what happened with Bernie Madoff. There is an actual parallel in Philadelphia where a renowned female lawyer was discovered to be a fraud after several years. Like in real life, the fraud appears to go away, but then one day, someone may ask a question. Some people say it’s unrealistic that Mike’s fraud goes unnoticed sometimes, but we try to do it like it is in real life, where it waxes and wanes.

6. Will we see any flashbacks or have any more returning characters to look forward to this season?

There will definitely be some flashbacks this season; it’s hard to imagine a year without flashbacks. Especially in the last six episodes, a lot of our favorite and least favorite characters will be coming back. Katrina will actually be making an appearance soon, too. The con to having good actors is that they have other jobs and it may be hard to schedule reappearances; Amanda Schull, who plays Katrina, is starring in a new show, while D.B. Woodside, who plays Malone, and Abigail Spencer, who plays Scotty, were recently cast in other roles, too.

7. What new faces should we expect to see this season?

Jack Soloff was introduced early on and will be a major antagonist, and Louis’s sister, who makes an appearance in the upcoming episode, will also play a major role this season.

8. Finally, as we have a lot of college-aged readers, any advice for students that want to go into entertainment, particularly as a screenwriter?

My advice would come from my personal journey; I did a podcast about how I got into writing a few years ago that goes into my story in detail. I did not always know I wanted to be a writer, and "Suits" is based on aspects of my life. My advice would be to base things on life, since that is a good approach to writing. If you are writing about a man alone in space, you can think of a time when you were alone, even if you were not in space. I also found it important to move to where the business is, which is Los Angeles, and throw yourself into the business. I was 32 and started as an assistant, but I had a good attitude and was ready to learn. I was just trying to get into the writer’s room and ultimately was lucky to be able to write for "Everybody Loves Raymond." I struggled as an assistant for eight years, but persevering will give you the best chance.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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