Nicholas D'Agosto, left, and John Lithgow appear in a scene from "Trial & Error." (Tyler Golden/NBC via AP)
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John Lithgow, who stars in NBC's daffy new comedy "Trial & Error" as a poetry prof who may or may not have murdered his wife, is clearly guilty of making viewers laugh. He's also guilty, in a career spanning nearly a half-century, of freaking out viewers (item: his chilling psycho-killer in the Showtime series "Dexter"), or warming the heart with his character's humanity – such as his breakout performance as Roberta Muldoon, the transgender former pro football player in "The World According to Garp". To wit: Right now he can be seen in the acclaimed Netflix series "The Crown" as British Prime Minister Winston Churchill.Meanwhile, he plays eccentric Larry Henderson on "Trial & Error," which premieres with back-to-back episodes Tuesday at 9 p.m. EST.Lithgow comes to "Trial & Error" as an established, multi-Emmy-winning sitcom star: For six seasons, he played the leader of a quartet of extraterrestrials who posed as a human family on a fact-finding mission to Earth on the 1990s hit "3rd Rock from the Sun".Born in Rochester, New York, Lithgow, 71, grew up in a theater family, with his father producing Shakespeare festivals.
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