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Southland: Ben MacKenzie Talks Cancellation, Dresses as Jay Leno

Ben MacKenzieWhile being interviewed by Ryan Seacrest on his radio show today, Southland actor Benjamin MacKenzie talked about the show’s cancellation by NBC and subsequent pickup by TNT.

MacKenzie said that he found out about the NBC cancellation while shooting on the set of Southland. He said, “I was making plans to go to New York with my publicist and the producers came on set and said, ‘We’re cancelled.’ And we said ‘You’re kidding?!? We haven’t premiered yet. You can’t actually cancel a show you haven’t premiered!’ So, we were all in a state of shock and we had a couple weeks off. I went to New York anyway and I came back and got the good news.”

He talked about how happy that the cast is to be going to the cable channel and all of the positive attention that cable shows are getting these days. “A lot of people are watching [cable]. A lot of Emmys are going to cable and, quite frankly, when everyone has cable, they can watch any channel they want so I think the network power is starting to slip.”

Mackenzie continued, “I think it’s a great place to be. We’re really excited and they’re very excited to have us. So, I think we’ll get a lot of promotion.”

Talking about Halloween, Seacrest said that he borrowed a tan CHiPs uniform from Erik Estrada for Friday night’s party and then went in an LAPD blue uniform on Saturday night, inspired by TJ Hooker and Southland.

MacKenzie said that he went as Jay Leno and laughed, “He kinda cancelled our show.” The actor said that he wore a Jay Leno mask and a “Canadian tux,” Leno’s typical casual outfit of blue jeans and a denim shirt.

He noted that it was all in good fun though and that he’s looking forward to going up against Leno’s show in the 10pm timeslot come January 12th.

What do you think? Will Southland on TNT get better ratings than Jay Leno on NBC?

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

lolo4cats January 6, 2010 at 6:22 pm

I’ve been a big fan of Southland since day 1!! It’s the first show I ever saw on TV that really showed it like it is “out there on the streets.” I was furious when NBC cancelled it, and I am so very glad that TNT had enough sense to pick it up! They are definitely going to beat out Jay Leno in that time slot and win some Emmys. NBC never even gave it a chance. With the sort of decisions they’ve been making lately, pretty soon no one is going to be watching the regular networks anymore.


Arlene December 30, 2009 at 1:29 pm

I am so looking forward to ‘Southland’. I used to watch Leno, back in the day (last year). Now I refuse on principal. I won’t watch him, Conan, ‘SNL’, or the new guy from ‘SNL’. Instead I watch ‘Nightline’, which I actually love.

I was very sorry that ‘Saving Grace’ was cancelled. ‘Raising the Bar’ too. But TNT, unlike NBC & ABC, has the decency to let writers write proper endings and actually will air those final shows.


amanda December 25, 2009 at 10:37 pm

I was so sad when southland was cancelled, especially since the way the finale ended last season. It was one one of my favorite shows next to the cw’s supernatural. I just heard from my mom sounthland would be back on so I had to see if it was too good to be true! I’m so excited. I hope it doesn’t get cancelled again :/ *knocks on wood*


Jennifer December 9, 2009 at 12:40 pm

I cant wait till it starts on TNT.. Jay Leno needs to go..


Brandon November 30, 2009 at 7:56 pm

Amen. Jay Leno has taken the spot of my 2 favorite shows on NBC. Friday Night Lights, and Southland.


joellen November 12, 2009 at 3:43 pm

I agree with Stephnaie…Jay Leno needs to either retire or go back to the 11:30 time slot. With Jay being in the Monday – Friday time slot they canceled a lot of good shows.


Bob November 11, 2009 at 12:47 pm

This was the only cop program that didn’t follow NY City Blues or a name similar to it. My wife and I enjoyed watching this program. Please do not cancel it. My wife and I use to watch jay Leno occasionally but we like more variety in the 10:00 PM time slot.


Stephanie Pestana November 10, 2009 at 7:11 pm

I have not been a fan of Jay Leno’s since he decided to dominate the 10 o’clock time slot MONDAY THRU FRIDAY! For pete’s sake Jay fricken retire already! I think that Southland will do well on TNT especially since Saving Grace was just cancelled out of the blue.


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