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‘Billions’ Stars Celebrate Season Three with High-End Whiskey – Sept 4, 2017

‘Billions’ Stars Celebrate Season Three with High-End Whiskey

By Ian Mohr – Page Six – September 4, 2017

The cast of “Billions” — including on-screen archrivals Damian Lewis and Paul ­Giamatti — were spotted knocking back high-end whiskey together at Mario Batali’s Del Posto to celebrate the series’ third season, spies said.

The cast earlier had their first table read before filming starts next week. Also at the tasting of flights of eight whiskeys, followed by a private dinner, were stars Malin Akerman, Maggie Siff and Condola Rashad and co-creators Brian Koppelman and David Levien. The group sampled Michter’s limited-production whiskeys, including the rare $5,000-plus-per-bottle “Celebration Sour Mash,” guided by the brand’s Magliocco brothers.

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Showtime Renews Billions for Season 3 – March 8, 2017

Showtime Renews Billions for Season 3

by Tim Surette – TV Guide – March 8, 2017

The struggle of the hedge-fund manager will continue on Showtime.

Source: Showtime

The network today announced that it has renewed its Wall Street drama Billions for a third season. Showtime didn’t announce an episode count or an estimated premiere date, but history says that the renewal will be for 12 episodes and Season 3 will premiere early next year.

Currently three episodes into its second season, Billions stars Damian Lewis as Bobby “Axe” Axelrod, a filthy rich hedge fund manager who skirts financial laws to add to his ever-increasing coffers. Paul Giamatti plays Chuck Rhoades, a U.S. Attorney bent on taking Axe and the rest of the Wall Street weasels down, but who has some issues of his own.

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Billions: The Show So Smart it Makes The West Wing Look Slow – Feb 21, 2017

Billions: The Show So Smart it Makes The West Wing Look Slow

As the Damian Lewis v Paul Giamatti epic returns, we salute a fast world where risky behaviour rules – and which will only get more gripping by the week

by Mark Lawson – The Guardian – February 21, 2017

Source: Showtime

For the makers of a TV drama, there are two potential disasters at the end of a first season: not being renewed, and being renewed. Disappointing as cancellation is, it at least leaves the possibility that one day the show will come to be regarded as an unfairly truncated lost classic. But get a second run and screw it up, and the successful first year will be weakened by the failure of the next.

But, in approaching Difficult Second Series Syndrome, Billions has more going for it than most contenders. The Showtime series – which returned in the US on Sunday and resumes in the UK on Tuesday – started from a scenario that has long and energetic legs.

The mutual obsession with each other’s destruction between US Attorney Chuck Rhoades (Paul Giamatti) and hedge fund maverick Bobby Axelrod (Damian Lewis) left many places to go and grow from the former’s attempt to charge the financier with corruption in the first run. Manic pursuit has the potential to play out over a long time, which is why Tom & Jerry has survived for almost 80 years and Moby-Dick is 600 pages long.

Source: Showtime

Cultural allusions are a big part of the Billions shtick, so it seems no accident that Rhoades – bearded, damaged, bordering insanity in his desire to bring his quarry in – has many similarities with Captain Ahab, Herman Melville’s whale-hunter, as well as Ahab’s premier literary descendant, JM Barrie’s crocodile-obsessed Captain Hook. Giamatti would be natural casting for either sailor.

References to the Hanna-Barbera cartoon may be less intentional, although, like the mouse Jerry, Damian Lewis’s mega-rich banker is often, counter-intuitively, the more attractive of the central duo. As in the animation, the viewer is sometimes surprised to feel pleased when the latest hot iron dropped by the enforcer of order lands scaldingly on his own foot while the rodent slithers away.

But, whereas Tom & Jerry came from a TV era in which it was believed that the key to success involved repeating the same situation to infinity, Billions knows it must adapt to survive. Season two cleverly flips the plot, so Axelrod becomes more the hunter, with Rhoades now the one under investigation for inappropriate behaviour.

Continue reading Billions: The Show So Smart it Makes The West Wing Look Slow – Feb 21, 2017

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Podcast Remote Controlled: Billions Stars Damian Lewis, Paul Giamatti and Executive Producers Preview Season 2 – Feb 17, 2017

Remote Controlled: ‘Billions’ Stars Damian Lewis and Paul Giamatti, EPs Preview Season 2 Showdowns

by Maureen Ryan – Remote Controlled Podcast, Variety – February 17, 2017

Source: Showtime

Welcome to Remote ControlledVariety’s podcast series featuring the best and brightest in television, both in front of and behind the camera.

This week’s episode features Variety executive editor of TV Debra Birnbaum and chief TV critic Maureen Ryan in conversation with “Billions” creators and executive producers Brian Koppelman and David Levien, as well as stars Damian Lewis and Paul Giamatti

Source: Showtime

In the second season of “Billions,” which arrives on Sunday, Chuck Rhoades comes out swinging — in more ways than one, according to Giamatti, who plays the federal prosecutor. 

Partly in reaction to various crises in his life, including his ongoing battle with hedge fund magnate Bobby Axelrod (Lewis), Chuck takes up jiu jitsu early in Season 2.

His training at the gym “becomes metaphorical for him and for the show,” says Giamatti, who notes that Chuck learns from the martial art “that you can win from a position of vulnerability.”

That insight will be important, given that Bobby, a billionaire with a deep-seated grudge against Chuck, “has decided that in order to survive, he’s got to take down Chuck,” Lewis says. “He’s decided this town isn’t big enough for the two of them, so he throws the book at Chuck.”

Continue reading Podcast Remote Controlled: Billions Stars Damian Lewis, Paul Giamatti and Executive Producers Preview Season 2 – Feb 17, 2017