|Stockard Channing as||Abbey (Abigail Ann) Bartlet M.D.||First Lady|
|Dulé Hill as||Charlie (Charles) Young||Deputy Special Assistant to the Chief of Staff|
|Allison Janney as||C.J. (Claudia Jean) Cregg||Chief of Staff|
|Joshua Malina as||Will (William) Bailey||Vice President's Chief of Staff|
|Mary McCormack as||Kate (Katherine) Harper||Deputy National Security Advisor|
|Janel Moloney as||Donna (Donnatella) Moss||Assistant to Deputy Chief of Staff|
|Richard Schiff as||Toby (Tobias Zachary) Ziegler||Communications Director|
|John Spencer as||Leo Thomas McGarry||Former Chief of Staff|
|Bradley Whitford as||Josh (Joshua) Lyman||Deputy Chief of Staff|
Jimmy Smits as
|Matthew Vincente Santos||Rep. D-TX|
Martin Sheen as
|Jed (Josiah Edward) Bartlet||President of the United States|
|Special Guest Stars|
|Kristin Chenoweth as||Annabeth Schott||Deputy Press Secretary|
|Gary Cole as||Robert "Bingo Bob" Russell||Vice President|
|Mary Kay Place as||Dr. Millicent "Milly" Griffith||Surgeon General|
|Ron Canada as||Theodore "Ted" Barrow||Under Secretary of State|
|NiCole Robinson as||Margaret||Hooper (last name) /
Assistant to Chief of Staff
|Patrick Fischler as||Walter Sprout||NASA Near Earth Object Observation|
|Cleo King as||Marla Whorisky||Donna's Temp Replacement|
|Melissa Fitzgerald as||Carol||Fitzpatrick (last name)
Assistant to the Press Secretary
|Kim Webster as||Ginger||Assistant to Communications' Director|
|Ben Murray as||Curtis Carruthers||Personal Aide to the President|
|William Hootkins as||U.S. Translator|
|Willie Gault as||Secret Service Agent||Agent Michael Madsen|
|David Grant Wright as||Edwin (Austin) Kelwick||NASA Administrator|
|Raymond Ma as||President Lian|
|James Kyson Lee as||Chinese Translator|
|Ping Wu as||Chinese Official|
|Jonathan Brent as||White House Photographer||Jim (first name)|
|Janette Kim as||New Reporter #1|
Question: For Martin Sheen: I was very excited by the episode where we found out that your character has MS. My mom has MS and it was great to see it addressed in prime time. Will there be more episodes that address this issue and what do you think will happen?
Martin Sheen: The President is gradually going to have to come to grips with the debilitating effect it is having on his body. Depending on how long the show is on the air, we will see the full effects of the disease. If we get the full term. Meaning I would finish 3 years in the 1st administration. If I am reelected it would be 7 years. By then the President would be in a wheel chair is going to be very very interesting.
TV Guide Awards Chat with Martin Sheen
March 5, 2000
TV Guide Online
Mr. [Kevin] Reilly [president of NBC Entertainment] said that 3 episodes of the new season had been completed and 9 of 22 had been written.
"'West Wing': Is It Facing a Struggle to Survive?"
by Bernard Weinraub
August 12, 2004
New York Times
Just before the holidays, Josh will become so disillusioned with the vice-president's campaign that he'll quit the White House. "Leo talks Josh into finding his own Democratic candidate, the way Leo found Bartlet," Wells explains.
"Martin Sheen's West Wing Dilemma"
by Daniel R. Coleridge
October 14, 2004
TV Guide Online
The president's wife, Abb[e]y (Stockard Channing), will begin a storyline, shortly before Christmas, that will reintroduce the issue of the president's multiple sclerosis.
"New flight for 'West Wing'"
by Mike McDaniel
October 14, 2004
"Part of what we're playing throughout the fall is the growing unease with the leading candidates that show up for the Democratic nomination," [John] Wells says, "and should the White House try behind the scenes to get more involved in seeing if a better candidate should be put forward?"
"Season of Change for 'The West Wing'"
by Rick Porter
October 18, 2004
Bartlet, meanwhile, is pondering his legacy and feeling a "growing unease" with the prospective Democratic candidates.
"That, we think, is interesting territory, when you look at who is likely to replace you and realize that you need to stay above the fray and, at the same time, you're not happy with the direction the election is going in," Wells says.
" In 'West Wing' time, it's more"
by Virginia Rohan
October 20, 2004
For a while, Pat Gove thought Josiah Bartlet was getting off easy.
That changed when Bartlet - the fictional president on the NBC drama "The West Wing" - started having symptoms she recognized.
Gove and Bartlet have something in common: Both have multiple sclerosis (MS).
The disease - a chronic degenerative disease affecting the central nervous system - only had caused political fallout for Bartlet until a few weeks ago. Now the character, played by Martin Sheen, is shown suffering the disease's many physical effects, including numbness, paralysis and loss of vision.
"Now it's getting more into how MS really is," the 54-year-old Mason woman says.
Multiple sclerosis patients and their doctors say the series is offering a realistic portrayal of the disease's unpredictable progression.
In the Dec. 1 episode, Bartlet reports losing vision in one eye. Last Wednesday, the character slowly lost feeling in his limbs, and was paralyzed from the neck down for some hours.
A trailer for tonight's episode (9 p.m., Channels 5, 2) shows Bartlet still partially paralyzed as he begins a crucial summit with China.
Dr. Michael Schmerler, a neurologist with Riverhills Healthcare, says the symptoms shown so far track with textbook examples of how MS affects patients.
"We see these symptoms, unfortunately, all too often," Schmerler says.
Nancy Corbett, 41, a Newport artist, has suffered the same vision problems and paralysis as Bartlet.
The series "is pretty accurate for most MS patients," Corbett says.
"'West Wing' showing 'how MS really is'"
by Peggy O'Farrell
December 15, 2004
On "The West Wing," Sheen plays a president who finds ways to do his job despite multiple sclerosis. A University of California consultant has advised Sheen on how to play the struggle with the disease.
"What she told me was to be subtle. I can have many ups and downs," he said.
Subtle and optimistic. "(MS) patients see the light at the end of the tunnel," Sheen said.
Sheen isn't an official spokesman for MS because, unlike his character, he doesn't have the disease.
"Sheen shuns political aspirations"
by Dave Mason
February 18, 2005
Scripps Howard News Service
"In terms of just getting nominated [for Outstanding Drama Series Emmy], we send out three episodes that show the diversity of the cast and strong storytelling, but we don't send shows that are too similar even if they're very good," executive producer John Wells explains.
by Wolf Schneider
May 31, 2005