While looking at film directors who are more than dabbling in television, the Village Voice's Joy Press puts the current trend into context. Turns out indie-types like Miguel Arteta (Six Feet Under) and Neil Labute (The L Word)(What's that? Sorry, don't have Showtime.) aren't the first, just the latest.
It seems film auteurs have been happily trading "total creative control" for "a job that actually pays" at least since Robert Altman's days on Bonanza. No news there. And with the networks turning to blockbuster hacks, the only creativity seems to be on HBO. And Showtime. Again, no surprise.
What IS interesting, though, could be called Six Degrees of Barry Levinson. Turns out a whole crop of indie vets, including Arteta, Lisa Cholodenko, Mary Harron, and Whit Stillman (speaking of whom, where is that guy?) all got to work on Levinson's series Homicide in the early 90's.
So how's about letting a crop of indie punks loose on the set of Law & Order, then?