Two great series return to TV, can’t wait, especially for “Bored to Death” (be sure to check out the interviews I did last Fall with series creator Jonathan Ames, and series stars Ted Danson and Jason Schwartzman)!
HBO COMEDY SERIES BORED TO DEATH, STARRING JASON SCHWARTZMAN, TED DANSON AND ZACH GALIFIANAKIS, KICKS OFF ITS EIGHT-EPISODE SECOND SEASON SEPT. 26
Jonathan Ames has a “day job” as a writer – but there’s plenty to keep him busy on other fronts. His work as an unlicensed private detective is flourishing, he’s moonlighting as a teacher of fiction writing, and he’s getting in and out of trouble with his best friends George and Ray.
Created by the real-life Jonathan Ames (“The Extra Man,” “The Alcoholic”), BORED TO DEATH kicks off its eight-episode second season with the episode entitled “Escape from the Dungeon!” on SUNDAY, SEPT. 26 (10:00-10:30 p.m. ET/PT), followed by other half-hour episodes debuting on subsequent Sundays at the same time, exclusively on HBO.
Starring Jason Schwartzman (“Scott Pilgrim vs. the World,” “Funny People”) as the fictional Jonathan Ames, BORED TO DEATH follows the misadventures of this noir-fiction-obsessed writer, who moonlights as an unlicensed private detective listing his services on Craigslist. Having recently finished his second novel (which remains unpublished) and started up a new romance, Jonathan continues to put his sleuthing skills to the test while teaching a night class on fiction writing.
Meanwhile, Jonathan’s needy mentor George Christopher, played by Ted Danson (HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm”), struggles with his magazine’s new cost-cutting publisher and some sobering medical news. And Jonathan’s confidant, cartoonist Ray Hueston, played by Zach Galifianakis (“Dinner for Schmucks,” “The Hangover”), deals with his own personal crisis by creating a new self-modeled comic-book character named Super Ray, resulting in a measure of success.
Also returning as a cast regular this season on BORED TO DEATH is Heather Burns as Ray’s girlfriend Leah. Guest stars this season include series veterans John Hodgman, Patton Oswalt, Oliver Platt, Laila Robins, Jenny Slate and Kirsten Wiig, as well as F. Murray Abraham, Kevin Bacon, Allyce Beasley, Olympia Dukakis, Jim Gaffigan, Joel Marsh Garland, Jessica Hecht, Kristen Johnson, Zoe Kazan, Domenick Lombardozzi, Richard Masur, Jim Norton, Mary Kay Place, John Rothman, Finnerty Steeves and Jonathan Ames himself.
Episode #9: “Escape from the Dungeon!”
Debut: SUNDAY, SEPT. 26 (10:00-10:30 p.m. ET/PT)
Other HBO playdates: Sept. 26 (midnight), 27 (2:30 a.m.), 28 (11:00 p.m.) and 30 (10:30 p.m.), and Oct. 14 (9:30 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Sept. 27 (9:00 p.m.) and 29 (11:00 p.m.), and Oct. 1 (9:30 p.m.), 2 (2:00 p.m.) and 3 (8:00 p.m.)
Taking time out from his new gig as a night-school fiction-writing teacher, Jonathan (Jason Schwartzman) is hired by a mounted policeman (Lenny Venito) whose name is on the client list of an S&M dungeon that’s about to be busted. Meanwhile, George (Ted Danson) is flummoxed to learn that his new publisher plans to cut costs on every front, and Ray (Zach Galifianakis) fails a yoga test with Leah (Heather Burns), putting their relationship in final jeopardy.
Written by Jonathan Ames; directed by Alan Taylor.
The eight-episode first season of BORED TO DEATH, which concluded in Nov. 2009, was hailed as “the best new comedy of the season” by the New York Times, while the Wall Street Journal praised the show for “flat-out inspired comedy” and the San Francisco Chronicle described it as “charming as well as quirky and funny,” calling the series “another gem unearthed by HBO.”
In addition to widespread critical praise, BORED TO DEATH recently received an Emmy® in the category of Outstanding Main Title Design (Tom Barham, Marci Ichimura, Dean Haspiel, Anthony Santoro).
Winner of a Guggenheim Fellowship, Jonathan Ames (creator and executive producer) is the author of eight books, including the graphic novel “The Alcoholic” (illustrated by Dean Haspiel), “I Pass Like Night,” “The Extra Man,” “What’s Not to Love?,” “Wake Up, Sir!” and “I Love You More Than You Know.” His latest book, “The Double Life Is Twice as Good,” was published in 2009. “The Extra Man” was recently adapted for a feature film of the same name by directors Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini, with Kevin Kline, Paul Dano, John C. Reilly and Katie Holmes starring.
BORED TO DEATH was created by Jonathan Ames; executive producers, Jonathan Ames, Sarah Condon, Troy Miller, Stephanie Davis and Dave Becky; co-executive producers, Tracey Baird and Donick Cary; supervising producer, Martin Gero; producers, Anna Dokoza and Michael Stricks.
HBO COMEDY SERIES EASTBOUND & DOWN, STARRING DANNY MCBRIDE, KICKS OFF SEVEN-EPISODE SECOND SEASON SEPT. 26
Arrogant, washed-up big league pitcher Kenny Powers thought he’d scored a shot at a comeback in the majors, but the offer turned out to be bogus. Now, having left his North Carolina life behind, he’s making a fresh start in a small Mexican town, where he can both nurse his wounds and bless the locals with his awesomeness. EASTBOUND & DOWN kicks off its seven-episode second season SUNDAY, SEPT. 26 (10:30-11:00 p.m. ET/PT), with other new episodes debuting subsequent Sundays at the same time.
Starring Danny McBride (“Up in the Air,” “Tropic Thunder”), EASTBOUND & DOWN tells the story of Kenny Powers, who used to be a star pitcher until his self-destructive behavior knocked him out of Major League Baseball. In the first season of the series, he returned home to North Carolina to teach Phys. Ed. at the middle school he once attended, and eventually scored another big-league job offer – or so he imagined.
EASTBOUND & DOWN also stars Steve Little as Stevie Janowski, the high-school band teacher who idolizes Kenny; Michael Pena as Sebastian Cisneros, owner of the local Mexican baseball team; Ana de la Reguera as sultry lounge singer Vida; Marco Rodriguez as Roger Hernandez, manager of the baseball team; Efren Ramirez as his new neighbor Catuey; Elizabeth De Razzo as Maria, another new neighbor; Deep Roy as Aaron, one of Kenny’s new sidekicks; and Joaquin Cosio as Hector, Kenny’s other new sidekick.
Episode #7: “Chapter 7”
Debut: SUNDAY, SEPT. 26 (10:30-11:00 p.m. ET/PT)
Other HBO playdates: Sept. 26 (12:30 a.m.), 28 (10:30 p.m.) and 29 (2:30 a.m.), and Oct. 1 (12:05 a.m.) and 5 (10:00 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Sept. 27 (1:20 a.m.) and 29 (11:30 p.m.)
Kenny Powers (Danny McBride) heads to Mexico to lick his wounds and start a new, more anonymous life. Befriended by a neighboring Mexican family and a sultry bar singer named Vida (Ana de la Reguera), Kenny emerges from “the darkest hole I’ve ever been in” by planning his comeback.
Written by Shawn Harwell, Jody Hill & Danny McBride; directed by Jody Hill.
This season’s episodes were directed by David Gordon Green and Jody Hill, both of whom directed episodes of the first season of EASTBOUND & DOWN. Series star Danny McBride met Green and Hill at the North Carolina School of the Arts, and later starred in Green’s “All the Real Girls,” winner of the 2003 Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, and the Sundance hit “The Foot Fist Way,” which was released theatrically in May 2008. Green also directed McBride in 2008’s “Pineapple Express,” opposite Seth Rogen and James Franco, and in the upcoming “Your Highness,” along with James Franco, Natalie Portman and Zooey Deschanel, scheduled for release in April 2011. Hill co-wrote “The Foot Fist Way,” and wrote and directed the 2009 feature film “Observe and Report,” starring Seth Rogen, Anna Faris and Ray Liotta.
The six-episode first season of EASTBOUND & DOWN, which concluded in March 2009, inspired critical praise, with Entertainment Weekly describing the show as “a winner about a real loser,” while the New Yorker observed, “Kenny Powers will live on in our minds after he’s left the screen.” The Hollywood Reporter hailed EASTBOUND & DOWN as “sublimely hilarious,” and the Washington Post called it “the most recklessly funny comedy of the year.”
The executive producers of EASTBOUND & DOWN are Will Ferrell, Adam McKay, Chris Henchy, Jody Hill and Danny McBride; consulting producer, David Gordon Green; producer, Stephanie Laing; writers, Shawn Harwell, Jody Hill & Danny McBride; directors, David Gordon Green and Jody Hill.