Epix commissions first original series

Epix, the soon-to-launch US cable network from Viacom, Lionsgate and MGM, has commissioned its first original series.

It has greenlit drama Tough Trade, produced by Lionsgate and executive produced by Weeds creator Jenji Kohan, about a dysfunctional family in the country music scene.

The show will start production in the summer and is expected to launch at the start of 2010.

Tough Trade was original set up at premium cable network HBO in 2006 through Furst Films, the production company behind hit movie The Cooler, although the network ultimately passed on the series. Sean and Bryan Furst will also exec produce.

The show was created by novelist Chris Offut, known for hit fiction including The Good Brother and No Heroes: A Memoir of Coming Home. He has also written on Lionsgate’s pot dealing comedy Weeds.

Epix is expected to launch online in May and via cable in October and will air a mix of hit movies from its studio owners as well as a handful of original series and live events.

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