HBO News: Maggie Gyllenhaal and Rhys Ifans in Talks for 40-Hour Series THE CORRECTIONS; Season Three of TREME Delayed Until Fall

     January 20, 2012

If you’re dismayed by the lack of “wow” in movies as of late, may I remind you that some of the best storytelling on any medium is currently happening on television. Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones—from sprawling epics to intimate character dramas, we’ve got some insanely great entertainment at the command of our fingertips. One of the most anticipated new television series is the HBO adaptation of Jonathan Franzen’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book The Corrections. The story centers on an elderly Midwestern couple with three adult children who decide to trace their lives from the mid-20th century to “one last Christmas” together near the turn of the millennium.

Noah Baumbach is directing the pilot, and we’ve already got Dianne Wiest, Chris Cooper, and Ewan McGregor attached to star. Now comes word that Maggie Gyllenhaal and Rhys Ifans may join the increasingly impressive cast. Hit the jump for more, including news concerning a delayed premiere for the HBO series Treme.

the-corrections-jonathan-franzenDaily Mail (via The Playlist) reports that Gyllenhaal and Ifans are in talks to star in The Corrections, which is being planned as a 40-episode series. Gyllenhaal is in early talks to play McGregor’s sister, Denise, who is a chef. Furthermore, Ifans is in talks to possibly cameo as a Lithuanian crime boss (excellent choice). The report says that the plan is to air four 10-episode seasons of the series. Given that it’s based on a beloved novel, the show’s producers have a clear beginning, middle, and end. I’m kind of in awe of this ambitious undertaking, and can’t wait to check the series out.

In other HBO news, the third season of the critically hailed yet ratings-challenged Treme has been pushed back to later this fall. We previously reported that the fourth season will be the show’s last, so that makes season three the New Orleans-set drama’s penultimate. NOLA (via Vulture) reported on the show’s fall bump, but gives no specifics as to why the series has been pushed back. Nevertheless, creator David Simon isn’t worried about the delay:

“It just doesn’t matter. I don’t pull an audience no matter when they put me on.”

As he was also executive producer of The Wire, Simon has experience with small ratings. He went on to stress that people find his shows on DVD rather than actually watching them on TV. He doesn’t mind as long as people are watching the show, and it appears that HBO mind doesn’t either as they plan on sticking with the drama for four seasons. The move is most likely a result of the cable network’s bevy of original programming set to air this year. The second season of Game of Thrones kicks off in April along with newcomers Girls and Veep. Additionally, Aaron Sorkin’s highly anticipated new series The Newsroom is set to premiere sometime this summer alongside the fifth season of ratings juggernaut True Blood. In short, as network series shut down for summer hiatus, we most certainly won’t be lacking in the original programming department.