FX's John Landgraf Clarifies 'True Detective' Remarks: It's 'Truly Great'

The executive's TCA remarks about the HBO hit were mischaracterized and perceived by some to be slamming the series from creator Nic Pizzolatto.
"True Detective"

FX CEO John Landgraf wants everyone to know that he thinks HBO's True Detective is a good show.

The executive, speaking to reporters earlier this week at the Television Critics Association's summer press tour, praised HBO's Emmy-nominated anthology series — but a handful of major outlets misinterpreted his remarks. (The Hollywood Reporter was not among them.)

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Addressing FX's own anthology, Ryan Murphy's American Horror Story (the network also has anthology Fargo), Landgraf said in his opening remarks that True Detective creator "Nic Pizzolatto is doing it very well, brilliantly well with the outstanding True Detective." During the Q&A portion, Landgraf added that "Nic is going to have to prove he can write something truly great every single year." Some outlets omitted the final three words of the sentence and turned what was intended as a compliment into a dig, which is believed to have angered HBO and Pizzolatto. 

Landgraf on Wednesday issued the following statement, further clarifying his remarks and what he hopes will end the flap that has ensued.

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"It seems unreasonable that I should have to issue a clarification for something that was stated clearly in the first place, but nevertheless I repeat, for the record, that I watched True Detective and loved it," he said. "I think Nic Pizzolatto wrote something truly great (and Matthew McConaughey, Woody Harrelson and Cary Fukunaga also did absolutely stellar work). Nic has created a very high bar for himself, and as a fan of the show and based on his work in season one, I have no doubt he will clear it by a mile with his second incarnation of True Detective. Also, for the record, I am an avid viewer and fan of many of HBO's outstanding original series, and I have a profound respect for Richard Plepler, Mike Lombardo and their entire gifted team. Anyone who claims to love television but doesn't pay attention to the consistently excellent work that HBO is fostering would be suspect in my book."

FX anthology Fargo was the second-most nominated series for this year's Emmys, with American Horror Story coming in third with 17. True Detective garnered 12, including best drama, after HBO made headlines with its decision to move its anthology into the larger category.

Email: Lesley.Goldberg@THR.com
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