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FX Boss John Landgraf: ‘I Don’t Know How to Do a Cop Show at the Moment’

”I’m not saying one will never be done or there is no way to do it, I just don’t know how to do it“

“The Shield” was the flagship drama series that launched FX into the original programming space, but FX boss John Landgraf says that he doesn’t see a way for a similar kind of cop show to make it on the air in 2020.

“I don’t mean to say that [cop shows] will cease to exist,” Landgraf told reporters during a press conference on Wednesday. “But FX has never existed to do an ordinary version of any type of show, and I don’t know how to do a cop show at the moment, to be honest with you. I’m not saying one will never be done or there is no way to do it, I just don’t know how to do it.”

Landgraf pointed to recent criticism of TV cop shows (a genre he called a “staple” of the medium) in the wake of renewed Black Lives Matter protests this year when asked about what kinds of programming he’s looking for at FX in the months and years to come.

“I’m the oldest person in our development group and I really rely on and need the sensibilities and the point of view of the younger generation,” Landgraf said. “You can kind of see the younger generation in America rising up in a really powerful way with very very strong and clear opinions.”

The FX boss emphasized inclusion and diversity in the network’s upcoming slate of programming, expanding his usual demographic breakdown of directors on FX series to include race as well as gender.

“A lot of what I love about the art of narrative storytelling, and have always loved since I was a child, is its ability to see through different eyes and walk in different peoples shoes,” Landgraf said. “It seems so ironic to me that we have such a strong and robust and accurate critique that the very thing that’s designed to expand our field of vision has been so narrow in its field of vision in terms of who’s been the creator of those stories, who’s been the protagonist of those stories.”