PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — A roundup of news Friday from the Television Critics Association winter meeting, at which TV networks and streaming services are presenting details on upcoming programs:
END OF ‘RECTIFY’
The SundanceTV channel says its Peabody Award-winning series “Rectify,” about a man returning home after living 19 years on Death Row, will end after a fourth season that begins this fall.
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Charlie Collier, the network’s chief executive, said it was creator Ray McKinnon’s decision to end the series, saying McKinnon wanted to offer a snapshot in time for the characters. McKinnon said there was no perfect end for them.
“They will continue to live on,” he said. “We just won’t document them any longer.”
HOPKINS BACK AS KING LEAR — SORT OF
Unlike many actors of his generation, Anthony Hopkins says he had an uneasy relationship with the work of William Shakespeare.
His background — he grew up wanting to be a musician, not an actor — had something to do with it. But Hopkins, 78, admitted Friday it was fear he wasn’t up to the material that led him to Hollywood and movie-making largely fulltime after playing King Lear on the British stage in 1986.
“Now, after all these years, I know how to do it,” Hopkins said.
He returned to King Lear, in a way. Hopkins is in the movie version of “The Dresser,” a play adaptation in which he portrays an old actor who performs the Shakespeare role in wartime England. Ian McKellen is his dresser, the backstage friend who gets him ready for each performance. “The Dresser” has already been shown on the BBC and will appear on the Starz network this summer.
Hopkins said he appreciated the character and the need of actors to act.
“Did I ever want to quit?” he asked. “Yes, several times. Every day I think about quitting but they come up and offer me a job and I say, ‘OK.’ We are mad. We want to be loved. We want more, more.”
McKellen, who had never shared a stage or screen with Hopkins before this project, said he’s never thought of quitting.
“You don’t have to stop,” he said. “There will always be a part for an old geezer in the corner of the stage.”
Riley Keough is starring in a new TV show she really wouldn’t want her grandfather to have seen.
The 26-year-old actress plays a law student and law firm intern who gets drawn into the world of women who provide emotional and sexual relationships at a high price.
“The Girlfriend Experience” debuts April 10 on Starz.
Keough is the daughter of singer Lisa Marie Presley and the granddaughter of the late Elvis Presley, who would have turned 81 on Friday.
“My mother has seen the show. She likes it. She’s pretty progressive. She understands art,” Keough told a gathering of TV critics. “My grandfather, I have no idea because I never met him. I really don’t want to show men in my family the show, to be honest.”
The 13-episode series shares a title with the 2009 movie directed by Steven Soderbergh, who met Keough when she appeared in his movie “Magic Mike.”
“I had a sense I was kind of scratching the surface of her capabilities,” he said.
Keough’s character juggles two different lives and quickly gets drawn into the GFE world, attracted to the rush of control and intimacy.
“The one thing I was having a hard time understanding was being able to have sex with no emotional connection,” she said. “I started to understand that the more sex scenes I did, how it could just be a physical thing.”
The series will debut at the Sundance Film Festival later this month.
Adele is sending a valentine to her fans in the form of a TV special.
The Oscar-winning singer-songwriter will perform songs from her hit album “25” and other tunes in “Adele: Live From London” airing Feb. 14 on BBC America.
The special is hosted by Graham Norton. Adele will perform “Skyfall” on TV for the first time since winning an Oscar for best original song for penning the theme to the James Bond film.
LEGEND GOES BEHIND SCENES
Singer-songwriter John Legend is going behind the scenes with the new series “Underground.”
He co-wrote the song “Heaven’s Door” for show about slaves escaping along the Underground Railroad that debuts March 9 on WGN America.
Legend contributes background vocals for the tune that is based on plotlines in the series for which he serves as an executive producer.
Among the stars is Jurnee Smollett-Bell (“Friday Night Lights”), whose older brother Jussie Smollett of “Empire” fame guest stars. It’s the first time in 20 years that the sister-brother duo will appear in the same show.
In 1994-95, the five Smollett siblings co-starred in the short-lived sitcom “On Our Own.”
‘HILARIOUS’ HENDRICKS BACK ON TV
Christina Hendricks is heading back to TV in another period piece.
This time, she plays a seductive ex-wife in AMC’s “Hap and Leonard,” a darkly comic swamp noir tale set in the late ’80s that debuts on March 2. Her character of Trudy is “very playful and hopeful and a trainwreck,” Hendricks said Friday.
It’s a far cry from her role of ad agency office manager Joan Harris in the ’60s-set “Mad Men,” which ended its Emmy-winning run last year.
“‘Mad Men’ was so amazing for all of us in the cast as far as opening doors,” Hendricks said. “Maybe people didn’t consider us for comedy before. Now we get a little bit more of a choice. I’m hilarious, you guys. I’ve always thought that.”
BBC America said Friday it will make a spin-off series to its popular “Doctor Who,” made by the same production team of Steven Moffat and Brian Minchin. The eight-part series “Class,” which will air later this year, is set in a London school.
AP Television Writer David Bauder and Associated Press Writer Beth Harris contributed to this report.