Why Yes, Presumed Innocent’s Nico Does Sound Like the Ghostbusters’ Nemesis — O-T Fagbenle Explains

If you’ve been trying to place the very specific voice that O-T Fagbenle is using as DA Nico Della Guardia on Apple TV+’s Presumed Innocent, be forewarned that we are about to make you hear nothing else but a certain fussy EPA inspector.

When TVLine spoke with Fagbenle ahead of Presumed Innocent‘s June 12 premiere (with its first two episodes of eight), we simply had to ask what inspired the accent and affectations he chose for Nico, one of murder suspect Rusty Sabich’s two main adversaries.

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The British actor and Handmaid’s Tale vet says in the video above, “I started reading him and I just thought, ‘Oh, he’s so pompous and so up himself,’ and he’s kind of described as such.

“Anyway…,” Fagbenle continues, “I happened to be watching Ghostbusters, and the bad guy” — EPA inspector Walter Peck, played by Die Hard scene stealer William Atherton — “has this really fun way of saying, like, ‘Do you have a permit to…?’ And it just grates at you. So I started developing this affectation.”

Watch a clip of Atherton in Ghostbusters, then read on for more…

“[Nico]’s also described as someone who speaks too much, who’s verbose,” Fagbenle adds, “so I started developing that and this voice came and stayed — for better or for worse.”

In fact, to hear co-star Nana Mensah (The Diplomat), who plays Chicago PD detective Alana Rodriguez, tell it, Nico’s voice literally “stayed.”

“He did not drop it the whole time” on-set, the actress declares. “I forgot he was British!”

Fagbenle, without missing a beat, mimes grabbing a bite at craft services, saying in Nico’s distinct, clenched-jaw timbre, “Can I have a couple more of those donuts, please?”

Want scoop on Presumed Innocent, or for any other TV show ? Email InsideLine@tvline.com, and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line!

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