The drama series, which also stars John Lithgow and Amy Brenneman, will be back for a sophomore run after a strong linear and digital debut.
The Old Man, which is based on Thomas Perry’s bestselling book, launched on June 16 with its first two episodes. The network said that, per Nielsen live+3 numbers, that it was the most-watched cable series premiere since January 2021, beating 60 other premium and basic cable dramas, comedies and limited series. The company also said that it was the most-watched FX series debut on Hulu in its opening weekend, although it did not break out digital streaming numbers.
The series follows Dan Chase, played by Bridges, who absconded from the CIA decades ago and has been living off the grid since. When an assassin arrives and tries to take Chase out, the old operative learns that to ensure his future he now must reconcile his past.
With Chase flushed out of hiding, the FBI’s Assistant Director for Counterintelligence Harold Harper, played by Lithgow, is called on to hunt him down because of his complicated past with the rogue fugitive. Working alongside Harper is his protégé Angela Adams (Alia Shawkat) and CIA Special Agent Raymond Waters (E.J. Bonilla). When Chase proves to be more difficult to apprehend than the authorities expected, Julian Carson (Gbenga Akinnagbe), a highly trained special ops contractor, is sent to pursue him as well.
While on the run, Chase rents a room from Zoe McDonald, played by Brenneman, who draws on reserves she never knew she had in order to survive the day when she learns the truth about her new tenant.
Bill Heck, Leem Lubany and Pej Vahdat also star.
The series, which comes from Jonathan E. Steinberg and Robert Levine, had a long journey to screen. It was well into production when it was shut down at the start of the pandemic. Filming restarted but had to be paused after Bridges was diagnosed with cancer and resumed earlier this year.
It is executive produced by Warren Littlefield, Steinberg, Dan Shotz, Levine, Bridges, David Schiff and Jon Watts, who also directed the first two episodes. It is produced by 20th Television in association with The Littlefield Company.
Steinberg, Littlefield and partners thanked the network and studio for “unwavering patience, faith and support” to get season one down and promised to “raise the bar yet again” for season two.
“Jonathan E. Steinberg, Dan Shotz and Warren Littlefield have done a fantastic job with The Old Man, which delivers on the powerful intrigue and breathtaking action of Thomas Perry’s book,” said Eric Schrier, FX Entertainment President. “The stellar cast led by Jeff Bridges, John Lithgow, Amy Brenneman and Alia Shawkat is really connecting with audiences and we are excited to get to work on season two with our colleagues at 20th Television and this fantastic team.”
“This terrific series has had a long journey to the air, which makes the reaction from critics and audiences these past few weeks all the sweeter,” added Karey Burke, President of 20th Television. “But the truth is, no one who has worked on it these past three years is surprised it’s resonating so deeply. From the brilliant creative execution by Jon, Dan and Warren to the spectacular star turns from Jeff, John, Amy and Alia, this heart racing series delivers and we thank FX for the incredible support.”