Movies & TV

‘Deadwood’ movie gets HBO green light

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif.: “Deadwood” fans can exhale. HBO says it’s green-lighted a long-discussed movie based on the Western drama that ended a dozen years ago. HBO programming chief Casey Bloys said Wednesday that production is scheduled to begin in October.

An air date has yet to be set but it could debut in spring 2019, he said.

Bloys told a Television Critics Association meeting it was a logistical “nightmare” getting the ensemble cast’s schedules to align, but it finally worked out.

The summer meets are held for TV networks and streaming services to present details on upcoming programs, which AP has rounded up.

The critically acclaimed, award-winning “Deadwood” was set in the rough-and-tumble South Dakota mining town of the title. The series aired from 2004-2006 with stars including Timothy Olyphant, Ian McShane and Molly Parker.

It was created by David Milch, known for his work on the contemporary police dramas “NYPD Blue” and “Hill Street Blues.”

HBO’s programming chief pushed back against the possibility that the cable channel will suffer under new owner AT&T.

Bloys said that there were no plans to choose volume over quality for its shows.

“No one is asking us to take pitches of a ‘Love Boat’ reboot or anything like that,” he said.

As support, Bloys cited comments made during an earnings call Tuesday by John Stankey, who manages the new AT&T division that includes HBO and other Time Warner media assets.

AT&T acquired Time Warner in an $85 billion deal concluded earlier this month.

Stankey said that the aim was to invest more in premium content at HBO, home to “Game of Thrones,” ‘’Big Little Lies” and “Westworld.”

In contrast, he reportedly told HBO staff recently to prepare for a difficult year.

Bloys called Tuesday’s remarks “music to our ears.”

Time Warner had curtailed programming investment as it readied itself for sale “so this is the first time in a long time we’ve heard anybody talking about investing in programming,” he said.

Meanwhile, Jane Fonda has said that she’s still confronted by Vietnam War veterans over her 1970s anti-war activism – and welcomes the encounters.

Such moments provide an opportunity to talk, she said, which needs to be done with what Fonda called “an open mind and a soft heart.”

The actress drew bitter criticism after being photographed atop an anti-aircraft gun during a controversial 1972 visit to North Vietnam.

Meeting with TV critics Wednesday to discuss a new HBO documentary on her life, she expressed regret for that moment.

At age 80, Fonda looks back at her life in HBO’s “Jane Fonda in Five Acts,” from director-producer Susan Lacy and debuting this fall.

Fonda continues to work, starring opposite Lily Tomlin on the Netflix series “Grace and Frankie” and working with Tomlin and Dolly Parton on a sequel to their hit 1980 movie “9 to 5.”

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on July 28, 2018, on page 12.

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