FX Scoop: Elijah Wood's Talking Dog, 'It's Always Sunny' Gets Musical Again, Plus More 'Justified' and 'Sons of Anarchy'
by Kim Potts, posted Mar 30th 2011 2:45PM
See that photo? Sadly, it's probably as close as we'll get to our dream of a 'Justified'-meets-'Sons of Anarchy' crossover episode.
But there were plenty of other things to be excited about from last night's FX upfront presentation at the Lucky Strike Lanes in New York, which the network combined with bowling, libations, yummy snacks and an impressive lineup of the FX talent.
Earlier in the day, the network confirmed a third-season pickup for Wednesday-night drama 'Justified,' as well as a third season for animated spy comedy 'Archer.' Casts of both shows were in attendance at the upfront Tuesday night, along with the entire cast of 'Sons of Anarchy,' the male contingent of 'It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia,' Louis C.K. from 'Louis,' the cast of 'The League' and John Scurti from 'Rescue Me.'
Also hitting the lanes: Elijah Wood and Jason Gann from the new FX comedy 'Wilfred,' in which Wood plays Ryan, a man who tries to kill himself but ends up befriending Wilfred, a talking dog (Gann), instead. Or, rather, a dog who talks only to him. FX president John Landgraf confirmed the buzzworthy show will premiere in June, airing Thursdays at 10PM and followed by the second season of 'Louie' at 10:30PM. Landgraf also says he's so confident FX audiences will click with 'Wilfred' that he's already predicting a second season of the show for summer 2012, along with a third season of 'Louis.'
Other Newsworthy Happenings From the Upfront:
'Justified' and 'Archer,' currently airing their second seasons, will debut their third seasons during the first quarter of 2012. As for the current season of 'Justified,' tonight's new episode (10PM ET) kicks off a series of events that will bring the Bennett-Given family feud to a head. The last six episodes of the season (wrapping with a season finale titled 'Bloody Harlan') will focus on the long-running family squabble, and when I asked series creator Graham Yost if we can expect to see Mags (the fantastic Margo Martindale) and her Bennett kin return for another season, his comment was "No comment."
The rest of the 'Justified' season also takes an interesting turn for Walton Goggins' Boyd Crowder, who seems to be ready to embrace what he considers his destiny to be on the wrong side of the law. In fact, the April 6 episode includes a Boyd storyline that puts him in place as ... the new godfather of Harlan County? "Funny you should say that," Yost laughed. "The plan for the season, along with the Bennett feud, was to get Boyd to that point, and to explore his relationship with Ava. It's all a big part of these last [six] episodes."
Yost also says to expect no legal but more "emotional" fallout from Raylan (Timothy Olyphant) and Winona's (Natalie Zea) stolen evidence money fiasco.
The final nine episodes of 'Rescue Me' premiere in July (tentatively July 12), with the series finale scheduled for Sept. 6, to tie in with the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, which has been a recurring theme on the Denis Leary NYC-firefighter drama.
'Sons of Anarchy'
'Sons of Anarchy,' the network's highest-rated show ever, will premiere its fourth season in September, and will pick up with the SAMCRO crew 14 months after the action of the season three finale -- i.e., just as the club members are getting out of jail.
While the biker boys are doing time for their misdeeds, the cast has spent their 'Sons' downtime with a bit of do-gooding. The whole cast is among the celebrity supporters of The Boot Campaign, a grassroots initiative to show support for American troops by asking people to purchase a pair of combat boots like the ones worn by military men and women. Proceeds from the sales go directly to charities that assist troops dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and 'Sons' star Kim Coates says he and his co-stars were inspired to join the campaign after a USO trip to Iraq where they visited with the troops.
"I want (the troops) to come home. I want them here. But in the meantime, I'll do anything I can to support them," says Coates. "It's emotional to go (to Iraq) and visit them, and see the sacrifices they're making. Anything we can do to show them our love and support, we'll do."
'It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia'
The seventh season of 'It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia' premieres in September, and will remain in its Thursday at 10PM time slot. New episodes of 'Archer' will follow 'Sunny' for three weeks, then the third season of 'The League' will take over the 10:30PM spot.
As for what we can expect to see the Paddy's Pub gang up to in the new season, 'Sunny' star Charlie Day says the episode he's most looking forward to is one that will revolve around Frank (Danny DeVito) and his long-running feud with his brother. Turns out the Reynolds siblings had a falling out because they were in love with the same woman.
"It's great. We're going to have flashbacks to the '60s, and we're going a little higher budget on those sequences, so it's going to be really funny, really cool," says Day, who's also making another foray onto the big screen in the July comedy 'Horrible Bosses,' with Jennifer Aniston, Colin Farrell, Jamie Foxx, Kevin Spacey, and Jasons Bateman and Sudeikis.
Day says another season seven episode will revolve around Facebook, specifically the 'Sunny' gang's take on how social media sometimes makes us less social. In the episode, Charlie, Mac and Dennis find out about a hot new bar via Facebook, but while they're checking out the watering hole, a fellow patron shushes them, a move that does not sit well with them.
And for 'Sunny' fans who've been waiting for another musical episode to follow up the classic 'The Nightman Cometh,' Day says the 'Philadelphia' staff is working on an episode spoofing kiddie beauty pageants that just may include some new musical efforts.
The show's seventh season begins filming next month.
Among the new shows expected to hit FX in the year ahead: 'Outlaw Country,' an organized crime drama revolving around the country music industry in Nashville and starring Mary Steenburgen; 'Powers,' an adaptation of the Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming comic book series about Chicago cops whose beat is dealing with the city's superheroes; the animated comedy 'Townie'; and 'American Horror Story,' the Ryan ('Nip/Tuck') Murphy–created drama that will star Emmy-nominated 'Friday Night Lights' mama Connie Britton.
FX will also continue to fill much of its primetime with theatrical movies, including a package of six blockbusters its referring to as "Premiere Ticket" flicks: 'Avatar,' 'Transformers 2,' 'Star Trek,' 'Twilight,' 'The Proposal' and '2012.' 'The Social Network,' 'Iron Man 2,' 'Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps,' 'Grown Ups' and the 'Karate Kid' remake are also among FX's movie acquisitions.