03/22/2012 12:30PM

Milch, Mann discuss end of 'Luck'


The cancellation of HBO's Luck is still making waves in the media. On Wednesday, New York Magazine's culture blog, vulture.com, published a lengthy interview with "Luck" producers David Milch and Michael Mann.

Read the entire interview here: The Vulture Transcript: Michael Mann and David Milch Open Up About the Cancellation of Luck

Here are some key excerpts:

On whether they had hopes for continuing the series after hearing the news of the third horse's death:
"Mann: No. For both of us who work in media, we understand the reality of it, and there’s certain physics. I mean, three horses is three too many, and when this third one went ... It’s a very common act, to have died. You know, you knew that this was unsustainable, that the fact of it is just going to make it ... I don’t know if we could individually articulate it. You felt sort of the resounding sense of, you know, 'This can’t work.' It’s like trying to negotiate with gravity. Because of the media attention as well as the fact of it, it just becomes an impossibility."

On the accusations from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals that horses on the show were unfit or mistreated:
"Milch: Just to pursue this a little bit, I was embarrassed for PETA when I read some of their statements, [of ] the savage ignorance of the realities of what we were doing ... They talked about 5-year olds being too old to race. A 5-year-old is in the absolute prime of his racing life! They [said] that the horses were found to have been medicated at necropsy ... Well, of course they were [found to have been] medicated at necropsy. They’d been medicated in the aftermath of being injured! This was beyond irresponsibility, the distortion that took place in order to make those accusations."

On what was in store for season 2:
"Milch: With 'Nostromo,' Joseph Conrad said that he had wanted to write a novel about the degradation of an idea. That's what we wanted to show in the case of Dustin Hoffman’s character, Bernstein. A dream that he had had, which is an organizing principle [that] we begin our lives with, he finally felt he had an opportunity to live that dream out."

For more of the interview, click here.

Christine Race More than 1 year ago
I liked the show for entertainment value - the stars - the prime time it gave racing and the characters WERE just getting started. I did not get the finale - but I do think part of the zeal was gone when I knew it was toast....I just didnt want to get too involved when the game was already OVER...I do give the STARS a big THANK YOU for really giving 100% into the development into some characters I could really believe in...great work IMHO!
Thomas Bergamo More than 1 year ago
Personally after watching Last nights Season Finale of Luck - The Show Just kept getting better and better. The Final Episode was most likely a pre-Cursor of just how good the show could have and should have been. I for one am deeply disappointed in its cancellation.
richard barton More than 1 year ago
Lighter flicked on ..... Arm extended !
Michael D More than 1 year ago
strange as it seems i liked the show alot. I have been around racing all my life and saw some drawing to a few trainers not the facts but similarities with Nick Noltes character similar in some ways to Jack Van Berg and the Franks who sued him and suck after Jerry died and supposedly forgave Jack of his promissary note for over 1 million then the kids going after him and the peruvian trainer former carrot truck driver and a top trainer similar to Julio Canani's life and a very good trainer but a little bizarre character. Was entertaining and gets all kinds in the horse business. Maybe you have to be deep in the barns to see similarities. I looked forward to watching the show and it is sad about the horses that is for sure.
juliuso More than 1 year ago
Sadly, with the cancellation of the series everybody loses. A fine cast had already woven a compelling story together that was interesting and informative. It was just scratching the surface of the undercurrents of the gaming industry, an industry that is thriving against all political and economic hurdles. The tragic demise of three horses BY ACCIDENT is blasted by one and all, yet these tragedies happen in racing all the time and do not receive such media attention. The athletes (thoroughbreds) are the same whether they are used for filming or gaming. By having a show that exposes the weaknesses of these fine creatures, it has already proven to be a leader in driving for improvements. PETA in their outrage over 3 thoroughbreds have done little to improve the lot of the thousands of racehorses running every year, and this show could have kept the quest for improvements in the industry at the forefront with the additional publicity alone. What has been missed is that this show was not just about horse racing. "Luck" was about the gaming industry as a whole in all its glory (the winners) as well as its ugliness (the losers). It had so much more to tell which has been taken away by a knee jerk reaction to the unfortunate side of the business. Perhaps the producers should simply re-tool the format to ease away from the focal emphasis of the horse races and the horses (which could still remain integral to the plot without having to carry so much screen time), and refocus on the players of the piece, the characters and the directions that they take while navigating the intricacies of gaming from the poker room floor to the politically brokered deals for slot machines. There are many stories still to be told about the gaming industry, and any additional exposure will bring considerably more and well needed scrutiny.
fernando111 martans More than 1 year ago
these animals dead was circumstancial and didnt have anithing to do with the show. Most likely related to unsound stated of the animals. I have been a racing fan since I was 6 years old almost 40 years , so I watched the show ,Hoffman,nolte,farina,hennesy,scott,and more, super cast,but the show was bad ,beyond bad, stinks,I still watch the show because Im a third generation" horsefan" , and I loved racing,I hope they try again, but do a better job
KeenelandCapper More than 1 year ago
plus one to this..show was horrible..very bad...
hialeah More than 1 year ago
Joesph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness" ends, "the horror, the horror". More appropriate (It sez here). g'day, mate. (feel free to share)
Pom De Terre More than 1 year ago
Luck earned its cancellation. 3 dead horses are 4 too many, especially whe Milch is a professed owner. These unpredicatable animals cannot be expected to "hit their marks". This guy may be a horse owner, but that does NOT make him a horseMAN. He has shown he is another Mike Repole, And that is clearly shown by the mishandling of these animals. Races cannot be scripted. Given the amount of availanle footage and the graphic capabilities, there was absolutely no need to lose the first 2 animals shooting a "race" The show had potential only IF these people had prorected their REAL STARS- the animals..
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
To suggest that these horses weren't taken care of is a statement made out of complete ignorance. These horses were well cared for by people who do it everyday for a living. There are no guarantees in racing that injuries or death will not occur, it is a dangerous sport for both man and beast. "Most" people involved in the sport take pride in the care of theses animals and do everything possible to insure their safety. To single out an individual owner is ridiculous. You must remember this is also a business and If not for the Mike Repole's and other owners who invest an enormous amount of money horse racing would be non-existant today. I have owned horses for over 40 years. I have raced and bred them. If you are in the business for any length of time you realize this is a part of the game. To judge so harshly shows you are not a horseman.
hialeah More than 1 year ago
Personally think the show was too negative. I mean, even Tony Soprano, murdering punk thug that he was, went to the shrink one a week. And it made him human. flaws and all. I guess that is what Ace's trips to the farm under the mountain-tops was supposed to engender - but the framing didn't work. If the characters from "Luck" were on the Titanic you'd be rooting for the ship to sink. IMO
mrm More than 1 year ago
Does anyone in racing actually think Luck would attract new fans. Yes some of what was portrayed does go on but the series was way over the top and not that good.