Behind The Scenes "Judging Amy"

BEVERLY SCHUCH, CNNfn ANCHOR, BIZ BUZZ: Meanwhile, prime time television also gearing up for a sleuth of debuts. One premiering this Sunday on CBS is "Judging Amy." Amy Brenneman produces and stars on an hour drama based loosely on her mother's life. Sherri Sylvester was behind the scenes to judge the new show.


AMY SYLVESTER, CNNfn CORRESPONDENT: It is the story behind the scene that distinguishes "Judging Amy" from every other new series. The concept comes from Amy Brenneman's real life. Her mom is a superior court judge and one of the first female graduates of Harvard Law.


UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR, JUDGING AMY": Did a friend from Harvard put your name in?

UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS, "JUDGING AMY": Well, to have friends from Harvard you have to get into Harvard. Don't you?

AMY BRENNEMAN, PRODUCER, "JUDGING AMY": The work that she does and the world that she works in is just totally fascinating and I have been thinking I never actually have seen this on television.

UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS, "JUDGING AMY": Ma'm, ma'm, ma'm. Taking a child who does not belong to you to Haiti no matter how you feel about his care is not OK.

SYLVESTER: When Brenneman was a child her mom worked in juvenile justice and that is the legal jurisdiction she wanted for the show.

BRENNEMAN: It may be hard sale because some of the cases that you're working on involved neglect, abandonment and delinquency and it's just hard to see kids suffering and I thought, you know, that is true but the people that I know who actually do that kind of work are the funniest, smartest, lifeiest.

UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS, 'JUDGING AMY": It's true that I didn't pay a lot of dues for this job, but I'm there now and I have to deal with it.

BRENNEMAN: She wears the judges robes, but she does have a mom in the series played by Tyne Daly.

TYNE DALY, ACTRESS, "JUDGING AMY:" It's a mix because I'm playing her mother, but I'm - my character was never a judge. My character was a social worker.

BRENNEMAN: Actually a dear friend of my mom's was also a social worker.

UNIDENTIFIED ACTRESS, 'JUDGING JUDY": What makes a good judge?

DALY: Pee before you take the bench. Don't wear perfume and always be sure there's no food in your teeth.

BRENNEMAN: I became fairly interested in having two strong women in one family. You know, I think we've gotten to the point where we can have, you know, a strong woman character, which is great, but I'm like what about the mother of that character or what about the daughter of that character.

SYLVESTER: Amy Brenneman is executive producer of the series. Her husband directed the pilot. He is Brad Silberling and his credits include the Nicholas Cage, Meg Ryan film, "City Of Angels." Like her mom, Brenneman attended Harvard.

BRENNEMAN: I was brought up as the world is your oyster. I was brought up with a lot of sense of service. You know, my father is an environmental lawyer. My mother doing what she does. They're not money making people. That's not part of the value system I grew up with.

SYLVESTER: She does believe that accomplished lives make for entertaining television.