Deadline recently announced that Ana Villafañe will be joining Melissa Rauch and John Larroquette in the NBC sequel series to the classic sitcom Night Court.
Written/executive produced by Dan Rubin, the multi-camera Night Court will tell the story of the unapologetically optimistic judge Abby Stone (Rauch), the daughter of the late Harry Stone, as she follows in her father’s footsteps to preside over the night shift of a Manhattan arraignment court.
After announcing Rauch in the lead role last month, fans have been anxiously waiting to see who, aside from Larroquette (who will be reprising his award winning role from the original show), will be joining her onscreen in the courtroom. Villafañe is the first of these casting announcements to be released, and she is set to play the court’s assistant district attorney (ADA) Monica.
Monica is described to be Type A, superficial and tightly wound, seeing the night court as nothing more than a stepping stone to bigger and better things. The only thing Judge Abby Stone’s courtroom is good for to Monica is getting some experience under her belt before landing a job at one of the major firms before she turns 30, a time that is getting closer every day.
This makes the character seem oddly similar to Larroquette’s Dan Fielding, who saw his position as court prosecutor as a stepping stone on his way up to becoming a judge himself and often felt as though the people in the courtroom with him were beneath his notice. So it will be interesting to see how the two characters interact onscreen, as we know that Fielding is still hanging around the courthouse in the new show.
Actress-singer Villafañe has recently been a recurring on the final season of Younger, which streams on Paramount+. However, you may also know here from her recurring rolls on New Amsterdam or Sunnyside. She has also performed to great success in theater, originating the role of Gloria Estefan in the Broadway production of On Your Feet –– for which she won a Theatre World Award for Best Actress — before going on to star in In The Heights as Nina Rosario in the Kennedy Center’s 2018 production of the musical.
Ana Villafañe’s casting marks the beginning of the casting announcements for Night Court, so stay tuned for more cast updates as they come.