Justified executive producer Taylor Elmore has closed a two-year overall deal with CBS TV Studios. He will supervise and develop new projects for the studio and is set to begin his new gig in April, after FX’s Justified wraps its sixth and final season. He has been on the show for the past five seasons, having started as a co-producer. Elmore, repped by UTA and attorney Bruce Gellman, shot the Wall Street pilot this past development season for CBS Studios and Timberman/Beverly, and his TV credits include CBS’ Cold Case and Raines, the latter with Justified creator Graham Yost.
EXCLUSIVE: Justified star Walton Goggins has been set to join Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart in American Ultra, the film that Lionsgate acquired recently in a whopping deal. Project X‘s Nima Nourizaden is directing and Max Landis wrote the script. Eisenberg plays a hapless stoner who has a Jason Bourne-like awakening when he learns he’s an asset in a complicated covert government scheme gone awry. Anthony Bregman is producing. Goggins will play the role of Laugher. He’s killing it this season on the FX series Justified as Boyd Crowder, and he most recently appeared in Lincoln and Django Unchained. He’s repped by ICM Partners and Darris Hatch Management.
Here’s some good news for fans of the FX drama who were bummed to hear that it will end after next season: Mary Steenburgen has signed for a recurring role on Justified. She will play Katherine Hale, a Southern belle who was the wife of Winn Duffy’s (Jere Burns) mentor in crime. Steenburgen will make her entrance in Episode 10 and recur through the rest of the show’s current fifth season. She is repped by Management 360 and UTA.
TCA: FX’s ‘Justified’ EP On Final Seasons, Life Without Elmore Leonard & The Late Writer’s Upcoming Tribute
Diane Haithman contributes to Deadline’s TCA coverage.
UPDATED, 3 PM: There were plenty of plot and story questions about what’s in store for the sprawling ensemble of characters on the FX series Justified at today’s TCA. A few tidbits from EP Graham Yost: “You will see the Harris brothers again. I’m not going to tell you who you’re not going to see again.” The current fifth season will be a big season for the character of Art Mullen (Nick Searcy). In Season 6, expect more on the relationship of Rachel Brooks (Erica Tazel) and Tim Gutterson (Jacob Pitts).
But two questions loomed larger: A) Why will the sixth season be the last? and B) What life is like without the late Elmore Leonard, on whose writings the series is based?
First, the final season: “A lot of it was just figuring out how much story we had left,” Yost said. “Our biggest concern telling these stories is that we don’t run out of story and start repeating ourselves. Although there were financial incentives to keep it going, it really felt in terms of the story of Raylon Givens in Kentucky, that six years felt about right.”
FX CEO John Landgraf today officially confirmed that the network’s drama series Justified will end its run with a sixth and final season. The final installment of the series, executive produced by Graham Yost and starring Timothy Olyphant, has not been formally ordered yet as Justified just launched its fifth season. “It was really Graham and Tim Olyphant’s decision [to end it],” Landgraf said at TCA today. “We talked about it a year ago, and they felt that the arc of the show and what they had to say [fit better with six seasons than seven]. Regretfully, that’s their decision.” Justified’s fifth season opened with 2.84 million viewers last week, down 21% from the 3.59 million who tuned in for the Season 4 opener.
FX has confirmed January premiere dates for drama Justified, animated comedy Archer and new animated comedy Chozen. Chozen had been scheduled to run on FXX but now will be paired with Archer for a Monday night animation block. With that move, FXX will launch Season 2 of Legit with Ali G: Rezurection in February. Season 5 of Justified premieres on Tuesday, January 7 at 10 PM. This season, Deputy U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant) confronts the Crowes, a deadly, lawless family from Florida intent on settling in Harlan with new criminal enterprises in mind. Archer moves to a new night, airing Mondays at 10 PM ET/PT beginning on January 13. The animated half-hour comedy that revolves around the International Secret Intelligence Service and the lives of its employees is FX’s highest-rated comedy series. The series premiere of Chozen is set for Monday, January 13 at 10:30 PM. The animated comedy revolves around its title character, Chozen, a gay white rapper fresh out of prison. Season 2 of The Americans is scheduled to premiere in February on FX.
Former Reaper co-star Tyler Labine has signed on as the lead of another supernatural comedic series, Hulu‘s 10-episode original comedy Deadbeat. The project, produced by Lionsgate TV, centers on Kevin Pacalioglu (Labine), an unfiltered-yet-endearing, perennial underdog who constantly struggles with his weight and scrapes by as a medium-for-hire, using his only skill– the ability to communicate with ghosts. He helps New York’s ghosts settle their unfinished business. Written and executive produced by Brett Konner and Cody Heller (Wilfred), directed and executive produced by Troy Miller (Arrested Development) and also executive produced by Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner of Brad Pitt’s Plan B, Deadbeat has begun production in New York. Labine is with CAA, PYE, The Characters and attorney Jamie Mandelbaum.
CSI: NY alum AJ Buckley has been tapped for a major recurring role on the upcoming fifth season of FX/Sony TV’s drama series Justified whose storyline will revolve around crime lord Dale Crowe (Michael Rapaport) and his family. Buckley will play Dale’s younger brother Danny, the romantic sociopath of the Crowe family who is a damn good man with a knife. Alicia Witt plays their sister Wendy. Buckley, repped by Thruline and Jackoway Tyerman, will next be seen in the indie North Of Hell which he also produced.
EXCLUSIVE: Alicia Witt and Edi Gathegi (The Twilight Saga, X-Men: First Class) have been cast in major recurring roles on the upcoming fifth season of FX/Sony TV’s drama series Justified. Witt will play Wendy Crowe, the smart, sexy sister of crime lord Dale Crowe (Michael Rapaport). She’s a paralegal and the public face of the Crowe crime family. She dickers with Raylan (Timothy Olyphant) to cut a nice deal for Dale, in exchange for essentially nothing tangible, and enjoys outmaneuvering the Kentucky lawman. Gathegi will play Jean Baptiste, a Haitian criminal in the employ of the Crowe family. The villain in charge of the Crowe family gator farm, he’s a former member of the Haitian secret police and has a coldly merciless attitude when it comes to disposing of both gators and humans. Witt, repped by Paradigm and Brillstein Entertainment, also is recurring on the new ABC drama Betrayal and stars in the upcoming Hallmark’s movie Merry Mix-Up and feature Tyler Perry’s A Medea Christmas. Gathegi, repped by Framework and ICM Partners, is shooting a cameo in Cameron Crowe’s Untitled Hawaii Project.
Related: Jere Burns Upped On ‘Justified’
Jere Burns has been upped to regular after four seasons as a recurring on FX’s Justified. Burns plays menacing heroin dope dealer Winn Duffy, who offered a partnership to Boyd Crowder (Walton Goggins) in the Season 4 finale. His recent roles include the cable dramas Breaking Bad, Bates Motel and Burn Notice. Burns is repped by Innovative Artists and Trademark Talent.
Ruth Negga has booked a recurring arc on ABC’s new superhero series Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. No intel on her role, which is the Irish actress’ first U.S. TV role. Her credits include the features All Is By My Side, Una Vida and Noble and the UK series Love/Hate, Secret State and Misfits. Negga is with ICM Partners, Principal LA and Jonty Brook in the UK.
“It’s hard even when you know it’s coming, and we knew,” Justified showrunner Graham Yost told Deadline of Elmore Leonard‘s passing today. “Once he had the stroke – it was a left brain stroke, and he was really was non verbal after – we got an update every day or two on how it was looking. It was pretty clear that it wasn’t looking good.” Yost says plans are already underway to pay tribute to Leonard before the next season begins. “We’ll do something for the Season 4 DVD set, and I’m sure we’ll do something on the first episode of the new season.” Yost and his writers had already plotted to integrate more Leonard characters into the series’ upcoming fifth season. “Before he had his stroke we were thinking, you know, we’re headed to end of the series, we’ve maybe got two seasons left – so we wanted to bring in the Crowe family which is a big part of his world. We’ve got Dewey Crowe on the show but there are other Crowes that populated his books and we thought it would be fun to focus on that.”
I’m starting a week off today, and woke up to the depressing news that the great Detroit author Elmore Leonard has died at 87. Like so many who push words around for a living, even if it is in a much inferior fashion, I was in awe of Leonard’s ability to write as only he could. He just made you want to try harder, no matter what kind of writing you did. You could go back to the likes of Mickey Spillane and Raymond Chandler, but I’m hard pressed to think of a crime fiction author who influenced so many. I swear that after a Leonard book came out, I could feel the influence even on daily journalists who read him. For instance, I read sports columnist Mike Lupica all the time and noticed after every Leonard book came out, Lupica would temporarily incorporate Leonard’s penchant for starting sentences in odd places, and clipping the quotes of his subjects to liven up the dialogue like Leonard did.
His influence on Hollywood is profound and I think he helped make dialogue in crime dramas better. Great dialogue screenwriters like Quentin Tarantino drew from his well, and not just when Quentin turned Leonard’s book Rum Punch into Jackie Brown. Hollywood used to screw up his novels all the time when studio guys, screenwriters and directors thought they knew better than the master. They borrowed his plots but made them super-serious, not understanding that it wasn’t the plots as much as the dialogue and interplay between those great characters that made his books memorable. It got so bad that Leonard stopped writing scripts because he tired of taking orders from inferiors, and preferred to focus on books, where final cut belonged to him.
But then things started to get better for Leonard after the release of Get Shorty, which celebrated the cool wit and humor that was present in all of Leonard’s work. Barry Sonnenfeld’s movie didn’t paint the bad guys with black hats, but let them reveal themselves slowly and playfully. That made it possible to sympathize not only with John Travolta’s loanshark-turned-movie producer Chili Palmer character, but also a stuntman hired as a thug (James Gandolfini), who, after being demoralized by a beating from Palmer, caught his breath and started excitedly describing to his film nut nemesis all the movies he did stunts in. I remember Scott Frank telling me that when he first tried to adapt that Leonard novel as a script, he went through the book and underlined what he felt was vital, in green hi-light marker. By the time he finished, Frank had underlined pretty much the entire book. But Frank and his cohorts managed to start a trend, where filmmakers began to realize that Leonard’s dialogue was pure gold and didn’t need a rewrite.
Frank and Jersey Films producers Danny DeVito, Michael Shamberg and Stacey Sher nailed it yet again when they collaborated with Steven Soderbergh to make Out Of Sight. That film had trademark flawed heroes and tremendous badasses, and for my money the sexiest courtship scene (between George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez) that I’d seen in a film since Daniel Day-Lewis and Madeleine Stowe formed their bond in Michael Mann’s The Last Of The Mohicans. And both those films had Dennis Farina. More recently, Graham Yost captured Leonard’s spirit in the FX series Justified, based on the gunslinging deputy U.S. marshal Raylan Givens whom Leonard hatched as a secondary character in the novels Pronto and Riding the Rap. The dialogue written for Timothy Olyphant’s Raylan Givens, Walton Goggins’ Boyd Crowder, Nick Searcy’s Chief Deputy Marshal Art Mullen, and all the bad guys, so captured Leonard’s wit that he told me it had restored his faith in Hollywood, or at least made the earlier slights less bothersome.
I got the privilege of spending some time with Leonard twice. Once in person, as a kid reporter at New York Newsday, when I peppered him with endless questions and recall him telling that one reason his scenes lined up differently than other writers is that he would write the same scene numerous times, each from the vantage point of different characters. He’d then choose the vantage point the felt right, and use that one. Three years ago, I spent time on the phone with him at Deadline, when director Charlie Matthau hooked us up while they were working on an adaptation of Freaky Deaky. Here is a replay of that interview:
FX president John Landgraf made the announcement at FX’s upfront presentation in New York this morning. Season 5 of the award-winning drama Justified will debut in January 2014. Additionally, Landgraf showcased high-profile drama pilots Tyrant, which recently tapped Oscar winner Ang Lee as director, and The Strain, based on Guillermo del Toro’s books, which he said “will reinvent the vampire horror genre.” Both have full writing staffs in place and are working on first-season scripts in anticipation of series pickups. Tyrant hails from Howard Gordon, Gideon Raff & Craig Wright; Strain from del Toro and Carlton Cuse.
The western crime drama Justified will wrap up its fourth season on April 2, FX announced today. Archer and Legit will follow on April 11, with Archer‘s Season 4 finale set for 10 PM and Legit‘s Season 1 capper at 10:30 PM. The Ultimate Fighter ends its season on April 13, with a three-hour finale beginning at 9 PM.
SEATTLE–Feb. 26, 2013– (NASDAQ:AMZN) – Amazon.com, Inc. today announced a content licensing agreement with Sony Pictures Television, making Prime Instant Video the exclusive online subscription home to the FX Network western crime drama Justified. The award-winning and gritty series has been one of the most watched shows on Amazon Instant Video, where customers can purchase and download episodes for $1.99 each, and will now be available to Prime members at no additional cost. In addition, Prime Instant Video will add the critically-acclaimed inner-city Los Angeles crime drama The Shield to its catalog.
A stuntwoman who says she was injured on the set of Justified during a late night shoot in 2011 today sued Sony Pictures and various individuals connected with the FX series. Citing “severe and permanent physical and mental injuries,” Lisa Hoyle and her husband Robert Jakubik have filed a suit (read it here) for Negligence, Premises Liability and Loss of Consortium for injuries the Stuntchicks employee suffered during a car crash stunt on February 3, 2011 at Santa Clarita Studios. While Hoyle and her husband don’t specify any dollar amount in their complaint, they are certainly looking for more than loose change. The nine-page filing seeks general damages “in an amount to be proven at trial” as well as loss of earnings, loss of earning capacity, legal fees, “medical and related expenses” and “other and further general and special damages in a sum according to proof at the time of trial” and further relief as the court “deems just and proper.” The plaintiffs are requesting a five-to-seven day jury trial in the matter. The defendants in the case are Sony Pictures Entertainment, Woodridge Productions, Santa Clarita Studios Corp, Don Kurt, Gary Lennon, Mark Glick, Susan Carpenter, Alison Troy and over two dozen other unnamed individuals. (UPDATE - Woodridge Productions, Kurt, Lennon, Glick, Troy and Carpenter were dismissed as defendants in the suit in the spring of 2013)