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After third horse death, HBO cancels Michael Mann-produced Luck

03.14.2012

After the third death of a horse used for the horse-track drama, HBO has cancelled the series Luck, which starred Dustin Hoffman, Nick Nolte, Dennis Farina, Kevin Dunn, Kerry Condon, Jason Gedrick, and Michael Gambon. 

Here's the official statement from HBO:

"It is with heartbreak that executive producers David Milch and Michael Mann together with HBO have decided to cease all future production on the series LUCK.
 
"Safety is always of paramount concern. We maintained the highest safety standards throughout production, higher in fact than any protocols existing in horseracing anywhere with many fewer incidents than occur in racing or than befall horses normally in barns at night or pastures. While we maintained the highest safety standards possible, accidents unfortunately happen, and it is impossible to guarantee they won’t in the future. Accordingly, we have reached this difficult decision."

Produced by Michael Mann (HEAT) and David Milch (The Sopranos), the show focused on lives of owners, jockeys, trainers and gamblers who are all tied to the same horse track.

HBO is renowned for it's original content, but isn't without its hits and misses (although they have a lot more of the former).  This, unfortunately, seems like, well, bad "luck."  I'm sure the producers thought about this possible scenario, but hadn't planned on it actually being a showstopper. 

However, with animal rights groups like PETA watching them like a hawk, they had to know it was coming.  I had already taken it off of my DVR list and the show was vastly underperforming, even with a second season renewal, so maybe this is a blessing for all involved.  I can't personally comment on the treatment of the horses on the show, but you can always count on PETA to do that for you, I suppose.  I'm sure they'd be happy if we had stop-motion or CGI animals used in all filmed projects. 

I'm going to start my own group called People for the Ethical Treatment of Humans (PETH) and together we can work together to get all Eddie Murphy productions shut down.  No human should be subjected to such cruelty.

Extra Tidbit: Probably the biggest loss with Luck being cancelled is no more nudity from Irish Hottie, Kerry Condon. Well, until the next HBO show she stars in...

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1:13AM on 03/16/2012
I'm amazed no one has commented on this yet, but David Milch had less than nothing to do with "The Sopranos". He's known for "Deadwood" and "NYPD Blue".
I'm amazed no one has commented on this yet, but David Milch had less than nothing to do with "The Sopranos". He's known for "Deadwood" and "NYPD Blue".
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9:17PM on 03/15/2012
How did wildfire do it?
How did wildfire do it?
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+2
2:18PM on 03/15/2012

devastating news

Luck was one of the best shows on TV with a phenomenal cast, amazing writing and fantastic direction show after show. An absolute shame that it's being cancelled, very very unfortunate.
As stated this was one of the very very best shows on television and certainly HBO's best running show next to Boardwalk Empire. This is incredibly disappointing...
Luck was one of the best shows on TV with a phenomenal cast, amazing writing and fantastic direction show after show. An absolute shame that it's being cancelled, very very unfortunate.
As stated this was one of the very very best shows on television and certainly HBO's best running show next to Boardwalk Empire. This is incredibly disappointing...
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4:15AM on 03/15/2012
I've not seen the show but HBO make some of the best shows I've ever seen. How hard is it to show some horses racing around a track. I mean Spielberg did some amazing things with War Horse so I'm sure they could spend a bit of money to make it happen Otherwise those horses died for nothing. The show must go on.

As for Game of Thrones HOLY FUCK THAT SHIT ROCKED.

As for Milch returning to Deadwood HOLY FUCK THAT SHIT WOULD ROCK.
I've not seen the show but HBO make some of the best shows I've ever seen. How hard is it to show some horses racing around a track. I mean Spielberg did some amazing things with War Horse so I'm sure they could spend a bit of money to make it happen Otherwise those horses died for nothing. The show must go on.

As for Game of Thrones HOLY FUCK THAT SHIT ROCKED.

As for Milch returning to Deadwood HOLY FUCK THAT SHIT WOULD ROCK.
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3:58AM on 03/15/2012
Never mind the horse, Dennis Farina is STILL acting?! Amazing.
btw whats wrong with using CGI horses?
Never mind the horse, Dennis Farina is STILL acting?! Amazing.
btw whats wrong with using CGI horses?
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2:14AM on 03/15/2012

On the other note: PETH. lmfao!

Funniest thing I read all day....Anyway, Luck just didn't have their luck. I was going around to watch from the start, guess there's no point now.
Funniest thing I read all day....Anyway, Luck just didn't have their luck. I was going around to watch from the start, guess there's no point now.
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1:25AM on 03/15/2012

In response to DoB

This is a different kind of cancellation. There were deaths. The structure of the show was such that they were basically murdering animals and for what? If you can't keep racing the horses then you have no show. It's a rather unique situation if you ask me. I think it's fascinating and tragic at the same time.
This is a different kind of cancellation. There were deaths. The structure of the show was such that they were basically murdering animals and for what? If you can't keep racing the horses then you have no show. It's a rather unique situation if you ask me. I think it's fascinating and tragic at the same time.
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1:44AM on 03/15/2012
As others have said though, was there no way to employ stock footage or CGI or some other means to make the show? I don't know. I guess if for every episode of Game of Thrones the production would have to shoot a wolf or something it wouldn't be worth it either. It's a shame. I didn't think this series had come close to meeting its full potential yet.
As others have said though, was there no way to employ stock footage or CGI or some other means to make the show? I don't know. I guess if for every episode of Game of Thrones the production would have to shoot a wolf or something it wouldn't be worth it either. It's a shame. I didn't think this series had come close to meeting its full potential yet.
+10
12:24AM on 03/15/2012
No animals were harmed during the making of this produc... never mind.
No animals were harmed during the making of this produc... never mind.
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11:16PM on 03/14/2012
No Sarah Jessica Parker joke?
No Sarah Jessica Parker joke?
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11:05PM on 03/14/2012
This sucks. I love this show and will miss it greatly. Sad that horses died, but couldn't they figure out some way of working around by using stock/old footage, like AirWolf did when they couldn't afford the helicopter anymore?
This sucks. I love this show and will miss it greatly. Sad that horses died, but couldn't they figure out some way of working around by using stock/old footage, like AirWolf did when they couldn't afford the helicopter anymore?
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-10
10:41PM on 03/14/2012
It's barely worth getting involved with a show on HBO anymore. With the exception of Game of Thrones. They cancel everything these days. Boardwalk Empire has made it but I'm not as enthralled with that show as some seem to be. They killed one of the only two interesting characters on the show last year.
It's barely worth getting involved with a show on HBO anymore. With the exception of Game of Thrones. They cancel everything these days. Boardwalk Empire has made it but I'm not as enthralled with that show as some seem to be. They killed one of the only two interesting characters on the show last year.
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10:16PM on 03/14/2012
This sucks. Only silver lining I can see is that it possibly frees up Milch to work on those Deadwood films.
This sucks. Only silver lining I can see is that it possibly frees up Milch to work on those Deadwood films.
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10:39PM on 03/14/2012
As much as I would love it, it's never gonna happen. Milch has said as much.
As much as I would love it, it's never gonna happen. Milch has said as much.
11:03PM on 03/14/2012
Actually, lately he's been more open to it, at least by saying it's not dead.
Actually, lately he's been more open to it, at least by saying it's not dead.
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