AMC has laid out its original series schedule for 2014, setting a November premiere for “Breaking Bad” prequel “Better Call Saul” and an April 13 bow for “Mad Men.”
AMC execs unveiled the schedule, which also includes new series “Turn” and “Halt and Catch Fire,” at its session Saturday as part of the winter Television Critics Assn. press tour in Pasadena.
AMC chief Charlie Collier opened the by acknowledging the rebuilding task ahead of the cabler with the farewell of “Breaking Bad” in September and “Mad Men” in its swan-song cycle.
“How can we replace ‘Breaking Bad’ and ‘Mad Men’? We can’t, any more than CBS could replace ‘All in the Family’ and ‘MASH’ or HBO could replace ‘The Sopranos,’ ” Collier said.
“Turn,” set among American spies in the Revolutionary war, premieres April 6 with a 90-minute opener. “Halt,” set in the 1980s amid the personal computing boom, will have a June debut.
“Saul,” the highly anticipated spinoff revolving around Bob Odenkirk’s Saul Goodman character, will open on the heels of the second half of “The Walking Dead’s” season in October. “Dead” returns for its first half on Feb. 9.
AMC also confirmed that the “Walking Dead” post-game show, “Talking Dead,” will be back for a fifth round.
After the April-May run of seven episodes, “Mad Men” will wrap its storied run in 2015.
During a session for “Turn,” British star Jamie Bell (‘Billy Elliot’) was asked about what he learned about the Revolutionary War as a kid in Blighty. “We were taught that we lost,” he quipped.
Showrunner Craig Silverstein noted that the show’s cast is almost equally divided among Brit and Yank thesps.
Alexander Rose, author of the book “Washington Spies” which inspired “Turn,” thoroughly charmed the TCA crowd — so much so that one scribe had to know his opinion as to why the British lost the war. He grinned but had a response at the ready.
“In a nutshell…The British almost gave up,” Rose opined. “They basically became almost bored of the war, it became too expensive. And Washington was good at dragging out the proceedings.”
AMC also released a new trailer for “Turn” on Saturday morning.