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Kelly AuCoin Almost Passed Up the Opportunity to Play Dollar Bill on Billions – March 15, 2019

Kelly AuCoin On Billions and Playing Dollar Bill

by DJ Sixthsmith | CBS Local/CBS Sacramento | March 15, 2019

Aucoin, who plays Axe Capital’s Dollar Bill Stern, had to be convinced by his friend and actor Michael Kelly to take the part. Let’s just say the decision ended up working out for him.

“I auditioned for one role initially and didn’t get that, but they called me back for this character called Dollar Bill,” said AuCoin in an interview with CBS Local.

“This would’ve been such a huge mistake, but I initially said I don’t want to do that. It didn’t even say it was a potential recur, it was a one-off.”

“Over the weekend I thought about it and I was like his name is Dollar Bill and he’s the cheapest millionaire in America, there’s something to this guy.”

AuCoin says it would’ve been the worst decision of his career if he passed up this past.

Season four of “Billions” returns Sunday and Dollar Bill will be a series regular for the first time. His character has come a long way since the first season.

“I didn’t do a ton early on, but even in those small little sections it was a blast,” said AuCoin. “It was very fun to play and the group gets along so well. We started building this family from day one.”

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Billions EP Previews What’s Next for Axe, Rhoades & the Crew in Season 4 – March 15, 2019

Axe: The smartest Guy in Town was Blindsided

by Ileane Rudolph | TV Insider | March 15, 2019

A thirst for vengeance drives both hedge fund king Bobby “Axe” Axelrod (Damian Lewis) and former U.S. Attorney Chuck Rhoades (Paul Giamatti) on Season 4 of the financial thriller Billions.

The longtime antagonists join forces to crush those who betrayed and weakened them at the end of last year. “We explore the lengths that characters will go, and how it makes them feel when they encounter the residue [their actions] leave,” says executive producer David Levien. Here’s a look back at where the main characters left off, and a peek at the wrath they’ll unleash to regain their power.

Bobby “Axe” Axelrod

The smartest guy in town was blindsided by Taylor Mason (Asia Kate Dillon) when his equally brilliant protégé left Axe Capital and started a competing fund, stealing clients along the way. “Axe feels he brought Taylor to prominence, only to be burned,” says Levien. Now he will use his own fortune and that of a new buddy, private equity queen Rebecca Cantu (Nina Arianda), to destroy Taylor. And in return for aiding Chuck, Axe wants his former enemy to help put his ex-colleague in legal trouble. Says Levien, “He’ll do whatever he has to to scorch the earth under Taylor’s feet.”

Continue reading Billions EP Previews What’s Next for Axe, Rhoades & the Crew in Season 4 – March 15, 2019

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Brian Koppelman and David Levien Talk More About That Ovi-Backstrom Hockey Reference – March 15, 2019

Pearl and Clyde or Ovi and Backstrom

by Scott Allen | The Washington Post | March 15, 2019


The Capitals are off for a couple of days after Saturday’s showdown with the Eastern Conference-leading Lightning in Tampa, but Washington’s top two scorers scored a mention in the season premiere, set for Sunday, of Showtime’s Wall Street drama “Billions.”

During a Tuesday appearance on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert,” “Billions” star Damian Lewis, who plays hedge-fund manager Bobby “Axe” Axelrod, introduces a clip from Sunday’s episode in which his character references Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom. The nod to the Stanley Cup champions comes during an intense conversation between Axelrod and trader Bonnie Barella (Sarah Stiles) about their underperforming colleague, Rudy (Chris Carfizzi).

Axelrod: “Do you know why Ovi scores so much? Because Backstrom shares the puck.”
Barella: “Yeah, but when he does, Ovi goes bar down. This lame loses the puck between his legs, or airmails it into the God damn glass.”
Axelrod: “So I fire him, and he never f—- up again, right, Rudy?”
Rudy: “That’s right, Axe.”
Axelrod: “And you signed your non-compete, didn’t you?”
Rudy: “Of course.”
Axelrod: “Good. Rudy? You’re fired.”

(A “bar-down goal,” for the uninitiated, is the hockey term for a shot that deflects off the crossbar before finding the net.)

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Asia Kate Dillon Tells Us What It’s Like To Be In Bobby Axelrod’s Crosshairs On Billions – March 15, 2019

Axe and Taylor are Each Other’s Most Worthy Adversary and They Know It

by Jason Tabrys | Uproxx | March 15, 2019

For three seasons, we’ve watched Bobby Axelrod (the investment Golden God) and Chuck Rhoades (the power-thirsty lawman) posture, snarl, and scheme while locked in a gloriously intense battle of financial sector cops and robbers with ample nuance and viciousness. In a sense, it (in addition to the butter-smooth line readings and distinct phraseology coming out of the mouth of impish Axelrod consigliere Mike “Wags” Wagner) has allowed the show to create rooting interests amidst the backdrop of ridonculous wealth and seedy political machinations. Themes that we’re all getting a triple helping of in the real world. But in season four, everything is changing… for now.

Introduced in season two, Taylor Mason (Asia Kate Dillon) is the embodiment of the term “does not fuck around.” Direct and hyper-analytical, Taylor climbed the ladder at Axelrod’s company (Axe Capital) and became a force of nature and someone for Axelrod (Axe) to groom… and use. An arrangement that worked for all sides until Axe traded on Mason’s personal relationship with a client (Oscar, as played by Mike Birbiglia), causing Mason to find a door and take a whole lot with them at the end of season three. A move that creates a new rival for Axelrod (Rhoades has own betrayals to contend with, allowing for a detente with Axe) as he and Mason fight for clients and supremacy.

We spoke with Dillon about the fight between Mason and Axe, whether Mason can reclaim their soul while building a rival company, and how the non-binary actor navigates moments where their (also non-binary) character is misgendered for story reasons on the show.

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Billions: Brian Koppelman and David Levien on Money, Power, and American Gods – March 15, 2019

The Privileges of Gods and Kings

by Sean T. Collins | New York Times | March 15, 2019

From Wall Street to Washington, the world of “Billions” is a world at war. According to David Levien, one of the creators and showrunners for the series, that’s by design.

“If you look at kings and Caesars and emperors throughout history and literature, there’s not a lot of guys who sat through a very peaceful, enjoyable reign,” he said. “Gods and kings: That’s what these people think they are.”

“They need people to battle against,” added Brian Koppelman, who is also a creator and showrunner for the show. (Andrew Ross Sorkin, a New York Times financial columnist, is the third creator.)

As “Billions” returns to Showtime on Sunday for Season 4, its two central combatants face a remade version of that world, newly allied with enemies to spare. The hedge fund billionaire Bobby Axelrod (Damian Lewis) is primed for vengeance against his former protégé Taylor Mason (Asia Kate Dillon). Meanwhile, the former United States attorney Chuck Rhoades (Paul Giamatti) must contend with investigations into his past conduct by the Trump era attorney general Jock Jeffcoat (Clancy Brown).

Continue reading Billions: Brian Koppelman and David Levien on Money, Power, and American Gods – March 15, 2019