Pain or damage don’t end the world. Or despair or f–king beatings. The world ends when you’re dead. Until then, you got more punishment in store. Stand it like a man… and give some back.
It’s been near ten years since we left Deadwood. The short-lived HBO western ran for only 36 episodes, but built up a following by ways of excellent casting, and the reciting of a vulgar poetry with masterful delivery. An ensemble led by Ian McShane and Timothy Olyphant, and filled out by some of the best character actors in the industry, delivered us some of the best played scenes in television history. But average ratings, coupled with exorbitant budgets, led to a premature end to the series.
Now, nearly a decade after it went off the air, creator David Milch is returning with a movie that will hopefully give long-suffering fans a fitting finale.
The ball started rolling in August of 2015, when cast regular Garret Dillahunt went to Twitter to report rumblings of a possible comeback. Things remained in that rumored phase for months, but now we have confirmation. HBO President Michael Lombardo recently told TVLine the following;
David [Milch] has our commitment that we are going to do it. He pitched what he thought generally the storyline would be — and knowing David, that could change. But it’s going to happen.
But the understanding is that when he is done with that he will turn his attention to [writing the] script for the Deadwood film.
Many fans had given up hope long before Dillahunt sparked discussion last summer, and the fact that it now seems to be moving forward is incredible news.
The cast, most of whom are much bigger stars now than they were a decade ago, are mostly expected to return. These types of things usually make it impossible to reunite everyone, but at the least we would expect to see the following characters come back;
Ian McShane as Al Swearengen; The life blood of the series, and like Olyphant with Justified, McShane just finished up an arc on Ray Donovan, and though he has been cast in Game of Thrones, that is said to be a smaller part and should leave him time for this.
W. Earl Brown as Dan Dority; Al’s muscle and often a provider of both humor and action, Dority’s character would probably be replaceable if he weren’t such a favorite. Since Deadwood ended, Mr. Brown has been seen on Justified, True Detective, and American Crime just to name a few. Brown seems likely to return.
John Hawkes as Sol Starr; Bullock’s partner and best friend, Mr. Hawkes had a nice run on HBO comedy Eastbound and Down, as well as several movie roles since Deadwood ended.
Paula Malcomson as Trixie; Now one of the leads on Ray Donovan, Malcomson was a major player on Deadwood as Al’s top working girl, as well as Sol’s main squeeze. In addition, since the show ended she’s had runs on Sons of Anarchy, Caprica, and the Hunger Games movies.
Molly Parker as Alma Garret; The rich widow and love interest for Bullock has been busy in recent years, most notably on NetFlix’s House of Cards, but it would seem odd not to see her return for this is some capacity.
Powers Boothe as Cy Tolliver; Al’s main competition for gambling and women in Deadwood was Mr. Tolliver, played by the hugely underrated, but always working Powers Boothe. From Red Dawn to 24 to Sin City to Frailty, Mr. Boothe seems always able to find time for worthwhile projects.
Anna Gunn as Martha Bullock; One of the things that could have delayed this project for so long was simply the fact that so much of the cast had found really good, long running projects to join. Anna Gunn is no exception there as most people will remember her for the rest of her life not as the wife to Seth Bullock, but as Skyler White, wife to Walter White and one of the lead characters on Breaking Bad.
Dayton Callie as Charlie Utter; Best friend to Wild Bill, keeper of Calamity Jane, and a quick ally of Seth Bullock, Mr. Utter was a fan favorite. Mr. Callie however is probably now better known for his role as Unser on Sons of Anarchy than anything else, and the end of that show seems to have reopened his availability.
William Sanderson as E.B. Farnum; For me, Sanderson will always be tied to Blade Runner more than anything, but his turn as Al’s spineless lackey Farnum isn’t too far behind. This is a character, that despite ample screen time, wouldn’t be totally needed in the movie if they’re short on time, but we can’t imagine a Deadwood without him.
Cast we may not see could include the man who broke the story, Garret Dillahunt. He’s played two characters already, both of whom wound up dead, and we wouldn’t be shocked if Milch finds another role for him. Also, Chucky himself, Brad Dourif played the camp doctor, but was not of good health, so it wouldn’t be a shock if his character is killed off. Really, I just want Wu back…
In any case, this fan for one is very happy. More Deadwood updates as soon as we have them.