Hey, remember how I said Southland is returning to TV on January 4? I hope you do, because I’ve seen the first episode, and the show is leaner and more focused than ever. In fact, I think that episode (“Let it Snow”) might be the best one of the entire series so far.
A week or so ago, I had the chance to talk to Michael Cudlitz (Officer Cooper) about the upcoming season. We talked about the changes to the show now that it airs on TNT, the path of his character this season, and a number of other things. Check it out below. I’ll be back with more Southland related stuff later in the week. I hope this show gets support, because I feel really positive about this season. Watch it on January 4. Please. Don’t make me beg.
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The new season of Southland… are they considering this season 2 or season 3?
I think they are advertising it as season 3.
Okay, and if I’m not mistaken, this will be the first season that was created fully under TNT’s umbrella, is that right?
S0 did anything change in the way the show was created or filmed or shot, or anything like that, during the production process?
I think the only change that happened from the shows that we were producing before… I understand there were some budget changes, I don’t know exactly what they were; they don’t discuss that with us. But everyone out in the ether world seems to know exactly what it is. I’m always amazed at the sort of information that they have and totally amazed sometimes at how wrong it is. I don’t know the specifics of what the numbers are. I do know that when you’re shooting only ten episodes, you do get a lot more time to prep the season and you get to approach the season shooting just ten episodes so you get to approach it as a whole, with a beginning, middle and end. And I know that everything they have submitted to TNT, nothing has been really changed, or they weren’t told they couldn’t do anything. So, just from a purely practical standpoint, I know that what they call the “notes” sort of process that they would typically go through with another network was pretty painless and from there the outlines were approved and they just started writing the scripts. From what I understand, TNT has left John Wells and company alone, so that in itself is a huge change from being on any network. Other than that, the storytelling is a little more focused than it has been. They’re going to focus on telling the stories through the eyes of myself, Ben Mackenzie, Regina King, and Shawn Hatosy but that’s not to say that everyone else that was on the cast prior… they’re all going to be around, just maybe not to the degree that they were before. But everyone’s still here and the show is tighter and better than ever in my opinion.
Yeah and you know, you mentioned the ten episode run and the focused nature of the season and I just had the chance to watch the screener a couple of days ago and I thought it was fantastic…
…and I did notice that it seemed quite a bit more focused and streamlined and I really liked that a lot so I guess that goes to say about the progression of this season and I really think it also speaks to the kind of success that a lot of shows on cable have been having lately with the shorter runs and the more focused storytelling and I’m really looking forward to seeing that in this season.
Oh awesome. Yeah I also think that it opens up for the studios… Typically a show overseas, I lived in England for a year, and their series would only run ten or thirteen episodes. That’s their typical season, because back kind of a time commitment. So in producing them this long, they still have the option to sell the series as a series with a shorter run overseas and that’s typically what they get over there, so I think it works for everybody.
(read more after the jump)