HBO Announces 'Deadwood' Movie, Gives 'Game of Thrones' Premiere & Prequels Update

Jim Halterman
HBO

The wait is over. The movie based on the beloved 2004-06 series Deadwood has been given a green light by HBO, with a hope that it will air in spring of 2019.

On the first day of the Television Critics Association 2018 summer press tour, HBO's President of Programming, Casey Bloys, fielded questions from critics and gave updates on a slew of HBO programming along with that big Deadwood news, including the Game of Thrones prequels and how Meryl Streep is doing as a new cast member for the second season of Big Little Lies.

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"We've got an October start date," said Bloys of the Deadwood film. Dan Minhan will direct and Gregg Feinberg, Carolyn Strauss and [creator] David Milch are all on board. How about the large cast from the series?

"It's been a logistics nightmare getting all the cast members scheduled lined up." The hope is that it will air in Spring of 2019, Bloys added.

Speaking of another HBO favorite, while we wait for the final season of Game of Thrones, set to air in the first half of 2019, where do the show's previously announced five prequels stand?

"The update I will give you on prequels is we are doing a pilot that Jane Goldman wrote," Bloys said. Multiple scripts for the various scripts were commissioned and, he added, the thinking was that, "out of five, we’ll be lucky if we get one that we’re very, very excited about."

A search for a director has begun, but with Goldman's script going forward, does that mean the other four are not happening or just on hold? “A combination,” Bloys replied.

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As for Westworld and the creative backlash for Season 2, whether the conversation is positive or not, Bloys said, "for a show to arouse that kind of feeling, that’s what we want."

Asked about the show's violence, Bloys said, "the setting [of the Old West] may dictate the gun violence." Looking ahead to the next season, however, he said the level of violence would depend "on where Season 3 takes place ... the violence may dissipate."

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A third season of True Detective is coming with Academy Award-winner Mahershala Ali and Stephen Dorff leading the cast, and Bloys said the hope is that the show will be on the air in early 2019. Did the network have major talks with creator Nic Pizzolatto about the creative direction, since the second season had a large amount of backlash? “The scripts that he wrote did all the talking for him," Bloys said. "We read four scripts and had a cast before we greenlit it ... it wasn’t based on conversations. It was on the page.”

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Finally, the cast of Emmy fave Big Little Lies have already been posting photos on social media from the set of Season 2 with new co-star, Academy Award-winning actress Meryl Streep. How's Streep doing alongside Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman and the rest of the cast?

In short, Bloys said, in a likely understatement, "Meryl Streep is very, very good."

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