Showtime has a huge opportunity to gain some ground on chief rival HBO thanks to the kick in the ass it’s received from its kick-ass drama Homeland. With the Emmys fawning over the Claire Danes-starring thriller, the network is enjoying a lot of attention. But how does one follow up one’s first big original drama hit? With lots of sex and a guy who makes dead transsexuals disappear, of course!
Masters of Sex and Ray Donovan are the two new series Showtime hopes will keep up its current momentum, and though we’ve known about them for like forever, today we finally get extended looks at both.
Masters of Sex stars Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan as real-life 1960s sex pioneers William Masters and Virginia Johnson. Ray Donovan stars Liev Schreiber as the titular character, a “fixer” for rich Hollywood types who makes mistakes (think dead hookers) disappear. Showtime has been pretty non-specific about when both series will debut, saying only that they’ll show up sometime in 2013.
Showtime has ordered dramas Ray Donovan and Masters of Sex to series, the network announced Monday.
Ray Donovan stars Liev Schreiber as Los Angeles’ best professional troubleshooter who can make anyone anyone’s problems disappear, except those of his own family. Paula Malcomson, Jon Voight, Peter Jacobson and Elliott Gould will also star. The project comes from Southland creator Ann Biderman, who will executive-produce along with Mark Gordon (Grey’s Anatomy, Criminal Minds) and Bryan Zuriff.
Masters of Sex follows the relationship of 1960s human sexuality pioneers William Masters (Michael Sheen) and Virginia Johnson (Lizzy Caplan).The cast also includes Beau Bridges, Caitlin Fitzgerald (It’s Complicated) and Margo Martindale (Justified). Based on Thomas Maier’s acclaimed 2009 book about the couple, the project is written by Michelle Ashford (The Pacific) and directed by John Madden (Shakespeare in Love).
Both shows received 12-episode orders and will premiere in 2013.
“Ray Donovan and Masters of Sex, each in their own distinctive ways, represent the caliber of programming we want to bring to our subscribers,” David Nevins, Showtime’s entertainment president, said in a statement. “Both series are ambitious and expansive, and feature great writing and great acting. I’m so excited for viewers to experience these two new dramas, which I believe will prove to be fantastic complements to our current slate of programming.”