Oscar-winner cast as lead in horseracing series

Dustin Hoffman is toplining the new David Milch series “Luck.”

He has been cast in the HBO skein that centers on several eclectic personalities who ply their trade on the horse-racing circuit.

Hoffman will portray a man in his late 60s just released from four years in prison who’s autodidactic, intelligent, and deeply involved in gambling.

Last week, Dennis Farina was cast in the series as Hoffman’s character’s driver and companion.

Also, John Ortiz is set to play a middle-aged Peruvian trainer. According to a recent interview Milch had with Daily Racing Form, character is loosely based on real-life trainer Julio Canani, who has been on the Southern California racing circuit for decades and has trained three Breeders’ Cup-winning horses. “Luck” is set to go into production this month and HBO is aiming for a January launch, he told the publication.

“Luck” is the third series Milch has created for HBO. He previously was exec producer of Western epic “Deadwood” and surf noir skein “John From Cincinnati.”

Michael Mann, who is directing the pilot, will also exec produce along with former HBO programming topper Carolyn Strauss and Milch. Henry Bronchtein (“The Sopranos”) is co-exec producer.

While Hoffman has spent much of his career on the bigscreen, he’s also ventured into television, including the telepic “Death of a Salesman,” based on the Arthur Miller drama.

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