FX has had a very busy day today here at press tour, with panels for "Louie," talk shows involving Russell Brand and W. Kumau Bell, and the new comedy "Legit." I'm going to live-blog the day's final panel, featuring Kurt Sutter and the actors of "Sons of Anarchy." The motorcycle club drama's fifth season debuts on Tuesday, September 11 at 10 p.m.
Among the announcements made during FX president John Landgraf's press tour executive session was the decision by the network to order a fourth season of "Louie."
The network also ordered an additional seven episodes of Russell Brand's talk show "BrandX," to debut in the fall. Landgraf said there would be creative changes to the series, which will be paneled later today at press tour.
Though ratings for "Louie" have never been enormous, it's done very well in critical acclaim and Emmy nominations, and the deal FX has with Louis C.K. — he gets a drastically smaller budget than a normal cable comedy in exchange for complete creative control — makes financial sense for the network.
During the panel, I asked Landgraf if he would like to cut a "Louie"-style deal with another creator. He said he would love to, and has even had inquiries about it from the Hollywood community, but the problem so far is in finding someone who can do all the jobs C.K. does, since he stars, writes, directs, works on the music and, until this season, did all the editing. He cited "Legit," an upcoming FX sitcom starring Australian comedian Jim Jefferies, where Jefferies does some writing, but needed help from a pair of other veteran comedy producers.
When I ran into "Modern Family" co-creator Steve Levitan early at ABC's press tour party, he seemed very relaxed and happy for a man whose show was in the middle of a very public salary dispute between his six adult stars and the studio that pays their salaries.
AMC has decided not to order a third season of "The Killing," bringing the mystery series to an end.
After a couple of light days at the tour involving channels I don't usually write about or set visits to shows I don't watch, press tour gets back into full swing today with a visit from ABC. As I like to do on certain tour days, here's a run-down of who and what will be here so you have some sense of what the day is like, and also on what may be appearing on HitFix today and tomorrow.
Hey all you "Deadwood" rewinders, be you veterans or newbies(*), I have a quick scheduling update: there won't be a review of "Amalgamation and Capital" today, but I'll be reviewing both it and "Advances None Miraculous" together next Friday.
This is less a matter of scheduling than my realization that, as with "A Lie Agreed Upon," parts 1 and 2, these episodes are better off being discussed as a whole, rather than as separate pieces. They take place on the same day and largely tell the same handful of stories. So we'll be back next week, and hopefully with a bunch of our friends. (I ran into Garret Dillahunt at FOX's press tour party and am hopeful he'll be contributing again before season's end.)
That is all.
(*) Well, except for this question: are the newbie reviews still serving a purpose for this project? With "The Wire," I wrote slightly expanded reviews for the veterans, and those posts generated their own healthy comments section. We got some newbie comments for "Deadwood" last summer, but have gotten a grand total of 3 newbie comments (spread over 2 reviews) this time around. Since all the newbies have to do to avoid being spoiled is to stop before they get to the comments, would anyone object strongly to me ditching that version of the review? Just curious.
A review of tonight's "Louie" coming up just as soon as I pine for North Dakota...
Dan and I are at press tour together, which means it's time for an in-person installment of the Firewall & Iceberg Podcast. We're punchy enough that it took some prompting for Dan to remember what day it was, but we talked quite a bit about the tour so far, answered your mail and did the usual "Buffy" and "Breaking Bad" pieces.
The rules and origins of True American, a drinking game glimpsed in a season 1 episode of FOX's "New Girl," are like shadows of a whisper of a rumor. Zooey Deschanel's Jess attempted to describe the game as "50 percent drinking game, 50 percent life-sized Candyland," but her roommates immediately disputed her math.
All fans of the show know for sure are the following:
Even though the bulk of yesterday's NBC executive session at press tour was spent discussing the network's comedy strategy — and the hope of finding shows with broader appeal than "Community," "30 Rock," etc. — there was still more to discuss about those comedies. So when I ran into new NBC entertainment president Jennifer Salke at NBC's press tour party, I asked her about the current plans for an "Office" spin-off built around Dwight, the state of "The Office" itself, and what might happen with all the marginally-rated returning NBC series that have shorter-than-normal episode orders for this season.