No ‘Dice’? Not quite: Showtime series will return

TV Pipeline

Andrew Dice Clay as himself in “Dice”

Q: Has Showtime renewed “Dice” for a second season? – Pete Garofalo, East Stroudsburg, Pa.

A: It has, and it will begin running on Aug. 20. The semiautobiographical comedy starring Andrew Dice Clay has a seven-episode order for its sophomore round, with Ron Livingston (“Office Space”) slated to join the show in a recurring role as an entertainment lawyer who ends up needing Dice’s help as much as vice versa. Season 2 also will see guest turns by “Saturday Night Live” alum Laraine Newman, Billy Gardell (“Mike & Molly”) and pop-music icon Tony Orlando.

Philip Winchester of “Chicago Justice”

Q: Is “Chicago Justice” really over already? It seems like it just started. – Dan Evans, via e-mail

A: Yes, the most recent addition to NBC’s slate of Windy City dramas from executive producer Dick Wolf ended almost as soon as it began. Though it had gotten a pretty big build-up, with its characters woven into the other “Chicago” shows earlier – and its first official episode linked to a story that began on “Chicago Fire” and “Chicago P.D.” – the network opted not to renew the drama that starred Philip Winchester and Carl Weathers. The roles they played will live on, though, as those episodes of the other “Chicago” series in which they appeared are repeated.

Q: We recently discovered “Longmire” and binge-watched all of its seasons. I read that there will be one last season. Do you know when it will air? – Diane Brown, Twin Falls, Idaho

A: Production on the last 10 episodes that will comprise the modern Western’s sixth and final season began in March in New Mexico. Netflix has said they will debut sometime this year, and since all of them will be made available simultaneously for streaming, we’d anticipate that will happen close to the end of the year, since all 10 stories have to be ready at once.

Robert Taylor will close out his run as the title lawman, with Katee Sackhoff, Lou Diamond Phillips and Cassidy Freeman among other returnees. Warner Bros. Home Entertainment is sure to follow the tradition it’s had with “Longmire” by releasing that last season on home video sometime after it has run on Netflix for a while.

Q: Does Jim Parsons have any involvement in the upcoming “Big Bang Theory” spinoff “Young Sheldon”? – Mike Sloan, Bryan, Ohio

A: Very much so, and in a couple of ways. Multiple Emmy winner Parsons will be heard in voiceovers as the present-day Sheldon, commenting on his younger life that the new CBS comedy will depict — and he’s also one of the executive producers of the show, which is scheduled to help launch the fall television season with a “preview” premiere on Sept. 25.

Q: Why was Emma Thompson not included in the reunion of “Love Actually” actors shown in the Red Nose Day special? – Carol Jason, via e-mail

A: Writer-director Richard Curtis – who made the original movie plus its brief sequel, and who also is the main driving force behind the Red Nose Day effort – told us that Thompson’s absence was related directly to the absence of the late Alan Rickman, who played Thompson’s husband in the 2003 film and was a close friend of hers.

Curtis said it would have been “too hard” in multiple ways to factor in Thompson’s character, given the personal emotions involved and the fictional explanation that would have been needed for Rickman not being in the follow-up, given that there was only a short time to accommodate the many returnees and their “Actually” alter egos.

Q: With so many of the original actors back in the new “Twin Peaks,” why isn’t Michael Ontkean among them? – Jennifer Ford, Port St. Lucie, Fla.

A: The actor who played Sheriff Harry S. Truman in the first incarnation of David Lynch’s mystery-drama retired from acting after his role in the 2011 George Clooney movie “The Descendants,” and he evidently couldn’t be persuaded to change his mind for the Showtime revival. Robert Forster’s Sheriff Frank Truman, who is Harry’s brother, clearly is intended to fill that character slot in the current version.

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Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin has decades of experience covering the television and movie businesses, winning Tribune Media Services’ Crown Jewel Award in 2008 for his performance in the company. Over those many years of interviewing and writing, he has spoken with everyone from Robert De Niro and John Travolta to Paul McCartney and Tony Bennett … from Meryl Streep and Julie Andrews to Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.

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