FX’s John Landgraf “Sweating Bullets” Looks for New Hits

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FX is about to enter a new era.

The network is struggling with how to replace many of its long-running hits. Snowfall, Mayans MC, What We Do in the Shadows, Reservation Dogs, Archer And Dave.

Thus, FX Content and FX Productions President John Landgraf is “sweating bullets” as he and his team search for new series to replace these shows.

“There was a time when you had these time slots and there was something going on in that time slot, it could be good, it could be bad, but there was not going to be any color bar in that time slot. Now if we air or stream things that are bad, it tarnishes the 20 years of hard work we have done in trying to build a brand that is synonymous with quality,” he told Deadline.

“We have important needs, but we have to fill them with something that is worthy of being a successor to the show we have created over the last 20 years. To be honest, I’m sweating bullets, because the truth is, you never know. Obviously you wouldn’t choose something or make something if you didn’t think it could be good. But you never know until the end of the process if it’s going to be as good as it needs to be.”

reservation dog

During his executive session at the TCA press tour, Landgraf said it was a “bittersweet” year as a result of all these shows ending.

“There are a lot of shows I would love to see live longer, because as you can see, there’s really big turnover going on in the FX slate right now and that puts a huge amount of pressure on me and the development team. There are more shows coming on at one time than I’m comfortable with, but the flip side of that is that it creates a lot of excitement because it creates a lot of opportunities to discover and launch new things. But it is always a bit challenging when you perform so well. You always think how will I find something that can replace it? And so far, knock wood, we have managed to do that,” he said.

Landgraf told Deadline that his needs span both comedy and drama.

This year’s slate includes a larger-than-expected roster, including limited series Feud: Capote vs. The Swan, Shogun, basketball play was cut and elizabeth moss-fronted curtain.

Feud Capote Vs. Swan

He said that this happened due to the strike of writers and actors. “We thought we were going to spread all these limited [series] More than two years. Then because of the strike, we were unable to return to production, make the new pilot and the mini-series had already been made. So, finally, they completed the schedule this year. “We desperately need new dramas and comedies starting in 2025,” he told Deadline.

The cupboard is not completely empty. Obviously an Emmy-award winning comedy BearWhich will come back in June and is expected to launch english teacherA comedy about a gay high school teacher from Brian Jordan Alvarez at the end of the year.

old manStarring Jeff Bridges, will return at the end of the year. The series is about to resume production after being interrupted due to strikes and consists of three to four episodes.

In terms of development, the network is currently casting for its comedy pilot Pieces of iceWhich comes from Ben Krongold, Rebecca Shaw, Nick Kroll and Kerry Dornetto.

This is a remake of the cult British comedy peep Showstarring Minnie Driver and Amandla Zahava, has also been piloted and Landgraf told Deadline it is “close” to a decision on its expectations.

Landgraf said he was “desperate to find the next great thing”.

He said pitching has picked up since the beginning of the year but not as much as he expected.

“Certainly, our first look and overall deals at our studios and our home studios, ABC Signature and 20th Television, a lot of things have come. The market has also opened up to some extent, not as much as I thought it would after such a long double strike,” he said.

But he said that unlike networks like HBO and streamers like Apple, FX chooses fewer shows as packages, preferring instead to spend longer periods of time “hinting” its development.

“All the way back It’s always sunny in Philadelphiaand through Bear, You might not have even noticed that development deal. A lot of our shows are really about the execution, not the names,” he adds.

FX has Noah Hawley Foreigner Coming in 2025, but Landgraf said it will not become an IP factory, highlighting how Mayans M.C It felt like the perfect spinoff to Sons of Anarchy because it was set in a different world. “You don’t want to repeat the same thing over and over again, it doesn’t really serve our needs to do that. This is not what the audience wants,” he said.

With all of these shows ending, Landgraf was asked at TCA if any other FX shows would follow through on the last five seasons in the future.

“It’s a good question, and it’s something that I struggle with, my team and I struggle with, and I really think deeply about,” he said.

He pointed to a decline in attention span. “I think our impatience with things that are a little demanding has decreased. “It’s something I’m really concerned about in the media ecosystem created by the Internet,” he said. “There are 8,000 episodes of television available on our streaming platform and so it is really difficult to get people’s attention. I’m very concerned about what this will mean for deeper libraries, because if I look at the ecosystem of actual television consumption, what I’m seeing right now is that people want a lot more from TV.

He added that the cost of making television has also “increased significantly”.

“We’ve brought a lot of amazing talent to television, but the costs are constantly increasing, that’s part of the situation when you make 600 television shows. Television shows start at such expensive rates. we have a lot of shows shield To It’s always sunny in Philadelphia And many that started with such modest budgets that even if they weren’t on fire out of the gate, we could afford to renew them and trust them creatively. This becomes difficult to do when something is extremely expensive.

American Horror Story: Fragile

Speaking of high-end shows, the network still has several Ryan Murphy-produced series in the pipeline.

second part of American Horror Story: Fragile Launching in April; Gladiator: American Sports Storywhich tells the story of Aaron Hernandez, is coming soon and American Love Story is still in development.

Landgraf said Murphy, who recently moved back to Disney after the Netflix deal, is also busy coming up with new ideas.

“All of these questions sit in Ryan’s mind and obviously, he has his own method for communicating when he wants to communicate. He is a little different from everyone else. I can tell you that he’s working on a lot of new things for us right now that I’m really excited about that I think he’ll be announcing relatively soon,” he said. “There are always a lot of ideas circulating about a possible new season American Crime Story Or American Sports Story Or American Love Story Or QuarrelBut I never know who he’s going to catch next.

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