FX is renewing two critically acclaimed shows: The heavily Emmy-nominated freshman drama Fargo will return for a second season and Louis CK’s acerbic comedy Louie will be back for a fifth season.
For the anthology series Fargo, the story will feature an all-new cast, a different time period setting and have a new “true crime” story that will unfold across 10 episodes. Writer-producer Noah Hawley will once again showrun the series. “We could not be more proud of Fargo,” said John Landgraf, CEO of FX Networks. “Noah’s audacious, bordering on hubristic riff on my favorite Coen brothers film earned 18 Emmy nominations—the most for a single program in our history. Fargo was nothing short of breathtaking and we look forward to the next installment.” There’s no premiere date yet, but Landgraf says it won’t be ready until fall 2015—at the earliest.
The second season won’t necessarily have a major film star like Billy Bob Thornton, the executive noted, and suggested Hawley’s writing in Fargo was superior to HBO’s oft-compared True Detective. “I think True Detective is going to have to prove it’s not just a vehicle for movie stars [next season],” Landgraf said. “[True Detective creator Nic Pizzolatto] is going to have to write something truly great every single year. I think Noah has already proven he can write something really great … I think we needed Billy Bob [to launch the show] but we don’t need somebody next year. Frankly, I think we can do it with unknowns—[newcomer] Allison Tolman brought as much to Fargo as Billy Bob.”
For Louie, FX has ordered a fifth season from creator-producer-star-everything Louis CK, but there’s a catch — only seven episodes this time. The show will return next spring. “Louie’s fourth season was once again groundbreaking. Sometimes hilarious, sometimes heartbreaking—always thought provoking,” said Landgraf. “The show went to narrative and cinematic places no comedy has gone before and we look forward to seeing what Louis comes up with next.”
—At Television Critics Association’s press tour in Beverly Hills on Monday, Landgraf told reporters that freshman Middle East drama Tyrant doesn’t have a verdict yet, but says he feels positive about the show based on early data.
—The executive says he’s thrilled with the performance of The Strain on Sunday nights, so a pickup on the vampire drama sounds more likely.
—The tenth season of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia has been pushed back to January.
—The next project from Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter—a medieval drama titled The Bastard Executioner—will shoot a pilot next spring in the UK.