Mister Sterling is an American television serial drama created by Lawrence O'Donnell that ran from January to March in 2003. It starred Josh Brolin as an idealistic United States Senator, and featured Audra McDonald, William Russ, David Noroña, and James Whitmore as members of his staff. Despite mostly positive reviews, the show, which aired on NBC on Friday nights, was cancelled after 10 episodes after the show only ranked 58th in the yearly ratings
Although it had numerous similarities to The West Wing in style and tone, it was not set in the same universe as O'Donnell's other political show. It is unknown if a cross-over would have ever occurred had Mister Sterling not been cancelled; however Steven Culp played presidential aspirant Sen. Ron Garland on Mister Sterling and House Speaker Jeff Haffley on The West Wing, and Democrats appeared to be in the majority in the US Senate on Mr Sterling, while in The West Wing consistent Republican control of both Houses of Congress was a key plot point.
James Whitmore was nominated for a 2003 Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for playing former Governor Bill Sterling, the senator's father.