Is The Lincoln Lawyer TV Series a Sequel to the 2011 Movie?

Image Credit: Lara Solanki/Netflix

‘The Lincoln Lawyer’ centers on prolific LA lawyer Mickey Haller, who takes on particularly unwinnable cases and makes it a habit to work out of his car. As the title hints, Haller is known for his distinctive Lincoln automobile, which is chauffeured by a former client. The show actually picks up soon after the central character has recovered from a tragedy. Audiences might also remember a very similar character from a movie of the same name with Matthew McConaughey. If you’re wondering whether Netflix’s ‘The Lincoln Lawyer’ is a sequel to the 2011 legal thriller film of the same name, we’re here to clear things up.

Is The Lincoln Lawyer TV Series a Sequel to the Movie?

Though the series does continue the central character’s journey in a way, it is not officially described as a follow-up to the movie. Fittingly, there is a significant time jump between the two. The film ends with Haller coming through for his client, Jesus Martinez, and heading to his next case. The show, on the other hand, opens with the “Lincoln Lawyer” coming out of a year-and-a-half struggle with addiction and jumping into action again. Thus, there is a large disconnect between the narratives of the two productions even though quite a few supporting characters, like Margaret “Maggie” McPherson, Lorna Taylor, and Jesus Martinez, have been carried over to the show.

The cast in the Netflix series is completely refurbished, with Manuel Garcia-Rulfo stepping into the central role that Matthew McConaughey essays in the 2011 film. The actors playing supporting characters are also different. The fact that Haller juggles a variety of cases and has a seemingly unending network of acquaintances makes it simple to watch the show without having to depend on the film.

If explored in terms of the novels that the film and series draw from, the latter could seem like a sequel. While McConaughey’s 2011 film is based on author Michael Connelley’s 2005 novel of the same name which introduces Haller’s character, season 1 of the Netflix series is based upon the subsequent 2008 Haller novel — ‘The Brass Verdict.’ Conveniently, the latter novel — and the series based on it — opens with Haller returning from an extended hiatus, distancing the narrative from where the movie ends.

Ultimately, Netflix’s ‘The Lincoln Lawyer’ imbibes some qualities of being a sequel to the 2011 film but isn’t really a follow-up. The significant changes to the cast as well as a long time jump and almost entirely new plot make ‘The Lincoln Lawyer’ a standalone series that starts its core storyline afresh. Of course, the distinctive aspects of the film’s central character, most notably his habit of working out of the back of his car, are preserved in the show. However, the world of Netflix’s ‘The Lincoln Lawyer’ is quite different from that of the 2011 movie of the same name and, therefore, the former does not appear to be a sequel to the latter.

Read More: Where Was The Lincoln Lawyer TV Series Filmed?