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TCA Press Tour: Martin Short and Lily Tomlin talk 'Damages'

January 17, 2010 |  2:34 pm

FYI: Comedian Lily Tomlin is mildly obsessed with FX's legal drama "Damages." So much so, she's not averse to hounding the series' star Glenn Close at parties (without success; Close said she "never lets the secrets out") or executive producer Todd Kessler at photography shows for any info on the series.

"I was a fan for the show from day one," Tomlin said via satellite from Florida at the Television Critics Assn. panel promoting the show. "It's the only show I've ever run home to see no matter what."

Now the viewer will become a participant. Tomlin will appear in six episodes as the monetary matriarch Marilyn Tobin. The comedian joins a list of actors appearing this season, including Keith Carradine, Michael Gaston, Campbell Scott and Martin Short.

This season, Patty tries to recover millions of dollars lost in investor funds from Wall Street tycoon-con artist Louis Tobin (Len Cariou), who insists he's not hiding money. Short, who joins the drama as a series regular, plays the Tobin family's attorney Leonard Widmore.

Short's recent credits include "The Santa Clause 3" and "Jiminy Glick in Lalawood," and his addition to the legal drama's lineup might appear unusual. But he isn't concerned his comedic persona will be distracting to viewers.

"I think of myself as a character actor," Short said via satellite from New York. "And you play a character in a sincere fashion."

Still, for Emmy Award-winning Close, the presence of the comedians on set took a bit of getting used to.

"My first scene with Martin and Lily ... I'm deposing of Lily's character," Close said. "It was a very surreal experience, having watched them my whole career and loving them."

The third season premieres Jan. 25 at 10 p.m.

-- Yvonne Villarreal