Julianna Margulies on nixed 'Good Fight' arc: CBS 'wouldn't pay' my rate

The Good Wife star Julianna Margulies almost made a visit to the CBS All Access spinoff The Good Fight this season — but the price wasn’t right.

The actress was “really excited about the idea” of reprising her Emmy-winning role of Alicia Florrick, “but CBS refused to pay my [ask],” Margulies told our sister site Deadline while promoting her Nat Geo miniseries The Hot Zone at The Contenders Emmys event on Sunday.

“The showrunners had found a nice away to reintroduce my character, a story that was to span three episodes” during the current third season, Margulies shared. Alas, when she asked for her regular fee — and no more, she noted to Deadline — Margulies was offered a Good Fight guest-star rate.

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NEW YORK - JULY 24: 'Innocents' -- Alicia argues a complex museum vandalism case that involves photographs a mother took of her son, and considers enlisting the help of investigator Jason Crouse (Jeffrey Dean Morgan). Also, Cary must deal with partner Howard Lyman's inappropriate conduct towards the younger associates at the offices of Lockhart, Agos & Lee, on THE GOOD WIFE, Sunday, Oct. 11 (9:30-10:30 PM, ET, 9:00-10:00 PM, PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick (Photo by Paul Sarkis/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JANUARY 21: Actress Julianna Margulies attends the 31st annual Artios Awards at Hard Rock Cafe, Times Square on January 21, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 08: Julianna Margulies attends 'The Good Wife' during AOL Build speaker series at AOL Studios In New York on January 8, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by John Lamparski/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 21: Actress Julianna Margulies attends 31st Annual Artios Awards Hard Rock Cafe, Times Square on January 21, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 08: Julianna Margulies attends the AOL BUILD Series at AOL Studios In New York on January 8, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 14: (L-R) Julianna Margulies and Keith Lieberthal attend the Michael J. Fox Foundation's 'A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Cure Parkinson's' Gala at The Waldorf=Astoria on November 14, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 15: Actress Julianna Margulies attends the 2015 New York Stage and Film Gala at The Plaza Hotel on November 15, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Mark Sagliocco/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 08: Julianna Margulies attends the AOL BUILD Series at AOL Studios In New York on January 8, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 15: Actress Julianna Margulies attends the 2015 New York Stage And Film Gala at The Plaza Hotel on November 15, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 28: Actor Julianna Margulies attends the 17th Annual Project A.L.S. New York City Gala at Cipriani 42nd Street on October 28, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 04: Actress Julianna Margulies speaks on stage during day 3 of The New Yorker Festival 2015 at SVA Theater on October 4, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Craig Barritt/Getty Images for The New Yorker)
THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON -- Episode 0340 -- Pictured: Actress Julianna Margulies on September 30, 2015 -- (Photo by: Douglas Gorenstein/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - AUGUST 13: 'Taxed' -- Alicia clashes with the bond court judge when she agrees to support a client's plea of innocence in a shoplifting case. Also, Diane is coerced by her client's counsel, Ethan Carver (Peter Gallagher), to argue against her own beliefs in a case about physician assisted suicide, on THE GOOD WIFE, Sunday, Oct. 25 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET, 9:00-10:00 PM, PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick (Photo by Jeffrey Neira/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - AUGUST 13: 'Taxed' -- Alicia clashes with the bond court judge when she agrees to support a client's plea of innocence in a shoplifting case. Also, Diane is coerced by her client's counsel, Ethan Carver (Peter Gallagher), to argue against her own beliefs in a case about physician assisted suicide, on THE GOOD WIFE, Sunday, Oct. 25 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET, 9:00-10:00 PM, PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured (L-R) Cush Jumbo as Lucca Quinn and Rob Bartlett as Bernie Bukovitz and Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick (Photo by Jeffrey Neira/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - AUGUST 13: 'Taxed' -- Alicia clashes with the bond court judge when she agrees to support a client's plea of innocence in a shoplifting case. Also, Diane is coerced by her client's counsel, Ethan Carver (Peter Gallagher), to argue against her own beliefs in a case about physician assisted suicide, on THE GOOD WIFE, Sunday, Oct. 25 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET, 9:00-10:00 PM, PT) on the CBS Television Network. Pictured Christopher McDonald as Judge Don Schakowsky and Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick (Photo by Jeffrey Neira/CBS via Getty Images)
NEW YORK - AUGUST 4: 'Cooked' -- Alicia and Lucca work together on a complicated court case involving a designer drug dealer. Also, Eli encourages Alicia and Veronica (Stockard Channing) to participate in a mother/daughter cooking show to help Peter's campaign, with disastrous results, on THE GOOD WIFE, Sunday, Oct. 18 (9:30-10:30 PM, ET/9:00-10:00 PM, PT) on the CBS Television Network . Pictured (L-R) Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick and Lesli Margherita as Mama Jill (Photo by Jojo Whilden/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 25: Julianna Margulies attends the 21st Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium on January 25, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Amy Graves/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 25: Julianna Margulies and Keith Lieberthal attend the 21st Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium on January 25, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Amy Graves/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 09: Julianna Margulies and Keith Lieberthal attend The Public Theater's Annual Gala at the Delacorte Theater on June 9, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Walter McBride/WireImage)
NEW YORK - JUNE 01: Julianna Margulies attends the 2015 CFDA Awards at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on June 1, 2015 in New York City. PHOTOGRAPH BY Photo Image Press / Barcroft Media (Photo credit should read Photo Image Press / Barcroft Med via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 03: Julianna Margulies attends Bravo Presents a Special Screening of 'Odd Mom Out' at Florence Gould Hall on June 3, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by D Dipasupil/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 03: Julianna Margulies and Keith LieberthalJul attend Bravo's screening of 'Odd Mom Out' at Florence Gould Hall on June 3, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 01: Julianna Margulies attends the 2015 CFDA Fashion Awards at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on June 1, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MAY 01: Actress Julianna Margulies and husband attorney Keith Lieberthal attend the ceremony honoring Julianna Margulies with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on May 1, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 14: Julianna Margulies leaves 'The Late Show with David Letterman' at the Ed Sullivan Theater on May 14, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by James Devaney/GC Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MAY 01: Actress Julianna Margulies and son Kieran Lindsay Lieberthal attend the ceremony honoring Julianna Margulies with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on May 1, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MAY 01: Actress Julianna Margulies is honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on May 1, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MAY 01: (L-R) Actors Michael J. Fox, Julianna Margulies and President and Chief Executive Officer of CBS Corporation Leslie Moonves attend the ceremony honoring Julianna Margulies with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on May 1, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
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“I’m not a guest star; I started the whole thing with The Good Wife,” Margulies explained. “I wanted to be paid my worth and stand up for equal pay. If Jon Hamm came back for a Mad Men spinoff or Kiefer Sutherland wanted to do a 24 spinoff, they would be paid.”

At the Television Critics Association press tour in February, Good Wife and Good Fight co-creator Robert King revealed under what circumstances Alicia might have appeared. “We thought maybe about making a big episode where she would be at the resistance, [and] Diane and her face each other,” King told reporters. “But that would be the end of the story. It felt like an asterisk.”

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