Categories Billions Print Media

Billions and Other Series That Showcase Casting at its Best – May 10, 2019

Billions: An Overflowing Fountain of Talent

by Kristi Turnquist | The Oregonian | May 10, 2019

When it comes to discussing why some TV shows seize our attention while others don’t quite click, viewers and critics often talk about stars, scripts or whether the network scheduled the show at the wrong time.

Yes, all of those are important. But what truly makes the difference between an ambitious dud, and a show you can’t wait to watch? Terrific casting.

Talking about which actors are cast in a TV show may sound about as thrilling as watching reruns. But from the stars to the supporting cast, pairing the right roles with the right actors is essential to making shows stand out.

That’s been true since the I Love Lucy days – who knew Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz would add up to TV gold? – and it’s more important than ever now, in our content-saturated culture.

Here are some contemporary shows and specials that demonstrate what an impact well-cast actors make.

Billions (Showtime): If you’re not watching this smart, sharply written drama about the big personalities, major egos, outsize ambitions and huge fortunes, set among New York financial sharks and politicians, you’re missing out on the best-cast show on TV.

From stars Paul Giamatti as Chuck Rhoades, a New York politico, and Damian Lewis as Bobby Axelrod, an up-from-the-streets hedge fund titan, to recurring characters, Billions is an overflowing fountain of talent. Even if the writing weren’t so clever, the array of top-flight actors digging into their roles with knife, fork and special sauce would make the show a juicy treat.

Continue reading Billions and Other Series That Showcase Casting at its Best – May 10, 2019

Categories Billions Poll Recap

The Unbeatable, Unstoppable, Unparalleled MVP’s from Billions Season 4 Episode 3 – April 3, 2019

Billions MVP Fanbook

by Gingersnap | Fan Fun with Damian Lewis | April 3, 2019

Welcome back to our ‘Billions MVP Fanbook,’ a compilation post commemorating all those in honor of achievement for the utmost brazen, uber shameless, ultra scheming, unmatched badasses to date – from sports references, music, and tasty food to pop culture remarks, shocking twists and ultimate paybacks.

In case you missed our previous awards, here is season four episode one and episode two. Now, let us continue with that tradition as we award our Most Valuable Players (MVPs) this week.

Here are our Billions awards for Season 4, Episode 3, “Chickentown.”

Continue reading The Unbeatable, Unstoppable, Unparalleled MVP’s from Billions Season 4 Episode 3 – April 3, 2019

Categories Billions Fashion and Style Print Media

How Billions Costume Designer Picks the Show’s Trademark Outerwear – April 1, 2019

No Billions Quant Is Ever Fully Dressed Without an Axe Cap Fleece Vest

by Hunter Harris | Vulture | April 1, 2019

Photo-Illustration: Maya Robinson/Vulture and Photo by Showtime

The only thing Billions takes more seriously than making and closing deals is how flashily — and intentionally — the Axe Capital quants layer for their sleek windowed office. A fleece vest is the de facto uniform for a certain type of Wall Street worker, and it’s their most important wealth signifier. To hear Billions costume designer Eric Daman tell it: “The Scots have different plaids that their families are associated with. The Irish have fisherman sweaters worn according to their clans. The finance guys have their polar fleece vests with their company logo on it. You would think that these billionaires would be like, I’m not wearing this shitty fleece vest. But they have a pride in it.”

It cannot be overstated that I never, at any point, have a clue what is technically going on in the Billions-verse. Money! Trades! The Southern District of New York! But I do know a lot about gossiping and have spent enough time on New York City-area dating apps to know this to be true: There are few things more important to someone who works on Wall Street (ditto Silicon Valley) than the shapeless, muted-color fleece vests these people wear, the ones with their firm’s logo stitched on one side of the chest, the ones that look deeply and importantly unattractive. So: Here’s absolutely everything you (probably did not, frankly) need to know about how the Billions costume designer picks out all of the show’s trademark outerwear for Axe Capital’s traders.

Continue reading How Billions Costume Designer Picks the Show’s Trademark Outerwear – April 1, 2019

Categories Broadcast Media Interviews Print Media Video

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.”

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

Categories Behind the Scenes Billions News

Final Table Read of Billions Season 4 – Feb 27, 2019

The 48th Episode

by Gingersnap | damian-lewis.com | February 27, 2019

Source: Instagram @briankoppelman

On Wednesday, February 27, 2019 Billions co-creator and showrunner Brian Koppelman gave fans a behind the scenes look at the final table read of Billions season four. Scroll through the five images:

Also, Kelly AuCoin (who plays Dollar Bill Stearn on the show) shared this on Twitter, tempting us with sweets:

Continue reading Final Table Read of Billions Season 4 – Feb 27, 2019

Categories Bill Print Media

Herding Cats and Damian Lewis – June 29, 2018

Damian Lewis: A Complete Gent

by Staff | Blake Mill | June 20, 2018

Britain’s filmmaking industry is flourishing and perhaps second only to Hollywood in terms of volume and critical acclaim. It is renowned for producing quirky, offbeat films that stand in stark contrast to the standard Hollywood fare of action blockbusters. Tony Bracewell, the British comedy film producer, is one of the men on the vanguard of this industry. Here is his story.

What is it like working with big actors?
Tony: In the popular imagination, there’s a sense that some actors can be prima donnas and difficult to work with. Nothing’s been further from the truth in my experience. Actors – or ‘the Talent’ as they’re known in the industry – tend to be very hardworking, dedicated people. They want to do a good job and want challenging roles.  We were incredibly lucky to have Damian Lewis play a cameo role in Bill. Again, you couldn’t have asked to work with a nicer guy. Everything he did was inch perfect and he was a complete gent.

Tell us about making your most recent film Bill
Tony: When we made the comedy Bill we took the life of William Shakespeare and told it from a unique angle. The film critic Mark Kermode subsequently described it as being “hugely funny and filled with semi-historically literate gags interspersed with pure slapstick humour.”

One running gag in the script blended the tales of William Shakespeare and Dick Whittington. So, when young Bill Shakespeare leaves Stratford to make his fortune as a playwright, his cat is meant to follow him all the way to London. The trouble is to make that work, you need a cat to follow stage directions. We tried everything: laying trails of cheese on the ground, trails of ham, coercing, pushing, you name it. We had some great people on the film, but no one could make it work. At some point, we had to cut our losses and accept that cats cannot be herded!

Read the rest of the original article at Blake Mill

Categories Billions Fashion and Style Merchandise

The Fashion and Style of Bobby Axelrod in Billions Seasons 1 Thru 5

Bobby Axelrod: The CASHmere King

by Gingersnap | damian-lewis.com | May 4, 2018 (updated September 14, 2021)

You would think Damian Lewis and Bobby Axelrod couldn’t dress more differently but diving a little deeper, I found some commonalities. However, if we were to simplify, Damian typically dresses up with spurts of leisure whereas Axe dresses down with spurts of formality. Svelte Damian can wear a suit like a coat hanger and Axe can wear a hoodie like a dope Bankster. As Billions costume designer Eric Daman has said, “Damian looks like he just walked off a mens catwalk in Italy” so when “Axe does wear a suit, it’s like a punch to the face.”

Continue reading The Fashion and Style of Bobby Axelrod in Billions Seasons 1 Thru 5