Showtime sets premieres for Homeland and Billions, sets winter schedule
Showtime has finally set its winter lineup, starting with the Emmy and Golden Globe winning drama series Homeland. The series will be returning for season six on Sunday, January 15 at 9 p.m. ET/PT. The network also set a date for season two of the hit drama Billions, that show will be returning on Sunday, February 19 at 10 p.m. ET/PT. Both series are shooting in New York this Summer with HOMELAND returning to the U.S. after spending the last two seasons shooting in South Africa and Berlin.
HOMELAND season six will once again star Emmy, Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe Award winner Claire Danes, Emmy nominee Rupert Friend, Oscar winner and Emmy nominee F. Murray Abraham and Emmy and Tony Award winner Mandy Patinkin. After she thwarted a terrorist attack in Berlin, season six picks up several months later and finds Carrie Mathison (Danes) back on American soil, living in Brooklyn, New York. She has begun working at a foundation whose efforts are to provide aid to Muslims living in the U.S. Season six will tackle the after effects of the U.S. presidential election, with the entire season taking place between election day and the inauguration. It’s a strange, transitional time in the halls of government filled with anxiety and different competing interests, where a very fragile and complex transfer of power takes place between the outgoing president and the incoming president-elect. Produced by Fox 21 Television Studios, HOMELAND was developed for American television by Alex Gansa and Howard Gordon, and is based on the original Israeli series Prisoners of War by Gideon Raff. Along with Gansa and Gordon, the executive producers for season six will be Chip Johannessen, Patrick Harbinson, Lesli Linka Glatter, Claire Danes, Michael Klick, Gideon Raff, Avi Nir and Ran Telem. HOMELAND has already been renewed for two additional seasons beyond season six.
BILLIONS stars Oscar nominee and Emmy and Golden Globe winner Paul Giamatti and Emmy and Golden Globe winner Damian Lewis as they scorch the earth in a costly war for personal domination. It’s law versus money, with power, sex, and the soul of New York in the balance, as hard-charging U.S. Attorney Chuck Rhoades (Giamatti) squares off against billionaire hedge fund king Bobby “Axe” Axelrod (Lewis). Maggie Siff stars as Wendy Rhoades, Chuck’s estranged wife and the top performance coach in the hedge fund world. Malin Akerman plays Lara Axelrod, Axe’s fiercely loyal and street-smart wife. Season two finds the characters vying for control in a changing world that presents an existential threat. For all of them, it’s a choice between evolution and extinction. Toby Leonard Moore, David Costabile and Condola Rashad also star. BILLIONS is created, written and executive produced by showrunners Brian Koppelman and David Levien. The series is also created and executive produced by Andrew Ross Sorkin.
The network has also ordered a new comedy pilot based on Frankie Shaw’s Sundance Film Festival Jury Award-winning short film SMILF. Shaw will star, write, produce and direct the semi-autobiographical pilot, with Oscar nominee Michael London (Sideways), and Emmy nominees Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky (The Office, Bad Teacher) executive producing. Set in Boston, SMILF will take a raw look at a single, 20-something whose desires for relationships, sex, and a career collide with the realities of young, single motherhood. The pilot will be produced by ABC Signature as a co-production with Showtime. The announcement was made by David Nevins, President and CEO, Showtime Networks Inc. at the 2016 Television Critics Association’s Summer Press Tour.
This year Ray Donovan picked up five Emmy nominations for its third season. It should be no surprise then to learn that Showtime has ordered a fifth season of the hit drama series. Production on season five’s 12, one-hour episodes will begin next year. The series returned for its fourth season up double digits year over year and continues to air on Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT. The announcement was made this week by David Nevins, President and CEO, Showtime Networks Inc. at the 2016 Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour.
The 2016 Emmy nominations mark the most nominations for RAY DONOVAN to date — Liev Schreiber picked up his second consecutive nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor, Jon Voight earned his second for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series and Hank Azaria was also nominated for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series. Series executive producer and showrunner David Hollander was recognized with his first ever Emmy nomination for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for the season three finale. And, Robert Edmondson, R. Russell Smith and Harrison ‘Duke’ Marsh were honored with nominations for Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Comedy or Drama Series (One Hour).
This season, Ray’s second chance at redemption is tested when he meets professional boxer Hector Campos (Ismael Cruz Cordova) and his volatile sister Marisol (Lisa Bonet), who harbor a dangerous secret. Wealthy art dealer Sonia Kovitzky (Embeth Davidtz) draws Ray further into her Russian mob operation. Meanwhile, Mickey (Jon Voight, in his Emmy-nominated and Golden Globe-winning role) whose scam in Primm, Nevada went sideways, decides to turn himself in for the Minassian shootout in order to protect Ray. Bunchy (Dash Mihok) comes to terms with his new wife Teresa’s (Alyssa Diaz) postpartum depression after having their baby girl and relies on Abby’s help. When Hector and Damon (Dominique Columbus) become fixtures at the Fite Club, Terry (Eddie Marsan) sees renewed interest in the gym, while Daryll (Pooch Hall) becomes a more integral part of the family when Ray enlists him to handle a job. Abby (Paula Malcomson) receives shocking medical news that leaves her questioning her role as a wife and mother. A newly independent Bridget (Kerris Dorsey) provides comfort and support during this tumultuous time as Conor (Devon Bagby) begins to assert his autonomy with disastrous results. This season’s eclectic line-up of guest stars features Emmy nominee Lisa Bonet, Golden Globe winner Stacy Keach, Oscar® nominee Diane Ladd, Golden Globe winner Dabney Coleman, Embeth Davidtz, Ted Levine, Gabriel Mann, Ismael Cruz Cordova, Chris Coppola and Billy Lush.
Another new half-hour comedy project entitled MATING (working title), which is executive produced by Jason Katims (Friday Night Lights, Parenthood), and written and executive produced by Stu Zicherman (The Affair, The Americans) was also announced. Taran Killam (Saturday Night Live) has been cast in the lead role.
The comedy anthology pilot will center on a recently divorced guy who married young and now finds himself completely unprepared for the brave new, frank and fluid world of dating and hooking up. The project, produced by SHOWTIME, Universal TV and True Jack Productions, is an “annual anthology” as each season will focus on a different protagonist’s journey through modern dating and relationships. Michelle Lee will also serve as an executive producer. The announcement was made by David Nevins, President and CEO, Showtime Networks Inc. at the 2016 Television Critics Association’s Summer Press Tour.
Taran Killam is best known to audiences for his six seasons on Saturday Night Live. Killam established his comedy career in Los Angeles as a main company member of the Groundlings, performing with numerous improv and sketch groups, and also appearing in the Groundlings’ Sunday Company. Additionally, he appeared in the show “Three Compañeros” at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre. His additional television credits include New Girl, How I Met Your Mother, Community, Drunk History, Comedy Bang Bang, MADtv and Scrubs. He also voices the character of Frantic in the original animated series The Awesomes. His feature-film work includes the Academy Award®-winning film 12 Years a Slave, The Heat, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Underdogs, Grown Ups 2, Ted 2, My Best Friend’s Girl, Big Fat Liar, Just Married, and Epic Movie. He can also be seen in the upcoming film Brother Nature, and in the independent Why We’re Killing Gunther opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger, which Killam also wrote and directed. In 2013, Killam released “The Illegitimates,” a comic book miniseries focused on a team of illegitimate children tasked with replacing their father, a James Bond-esque super-spy.
It was also announced this week that Jay Pharoah (Saturday Night Live) has been cast in the lead role for the new pilot WHITE FAMOUS. The show is a half-hour comedy executive produced by Academy Award winner Jamie Foxx and showrunner Tom Kapinos (Californication). Tim Story, the director who helmed the movie franchises Barbershop, Fantastic Four, Ride Along and Think Like A Man, has joined the project as an executive producer and will direct the pilot. WHITE FAMOUS will be written by Kapinos, based on an idea by Jamie Foxx, who will guest star in a recurring role. A co-production between Lionsgate Television and SHOWTIME, the project will focus on a talented, young African-American comedian, Floyd Mooney (Pharoah), whose star is rising, forcing him to navigate the treacherous waters of maintaining his credibility as he begins to cross-over towards becoming “white famous.”
Showtime’s THE CIRCUS returns Sunday, September 11 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME. Following a brief hiatus, THE CIRCUS will return in time to track and cover the first presidential debate, continuing its unprecedented access to the players and key events leading up to the general election. Cameras will crisscross the country alongside nominees Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to bring you every dramatic moment – from the intense head-to-head debates through election night – as America picks its next president.