Shepard Will Star In Epix's First Pilot 

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San Shepard will star in the first original series pilot for movie service Epix.
The actor (The Right Stuff) and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright (Buried Child) will appear in Tough Trade, portraying the patriarch of the Tucker family, a three-generation musical dynasty in Nashville, which is on the verge of bankruptcy given its members' tastes for drink, debauchery and divorce.
With a creative team led by executive producer and showrunner Jenji Kohan (Weeds), the pilot was written by creator/co-executive producer Chris Offutt (True Blood, Weeds) and will be directed by Gavin Hood (X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Rendition, Tsotsi). Shooting is set to beg Dec. 3 in Nashville.
"Sam Shepard is the ideal actor to star in Tough Trade and we are proud to have him be a part of Epix's first original series," said Epix president and CEO Mark Greenberg in a statement. "With Jenji Kohan as the executive producer and the incredible team at Lionsgate, we have no doubt that Tough Trade is going to be a great story that launches our original programming line-up on EPIX. We are excited to begin production in Nashville and look forward to showing this pilot episode on EPIX in 2010."
Epix, which launched with Verizon FiOS on Oct. 30, is a venture of Viacom Inc.'s Paramount Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. and Lionsgate.
Shepard will soon be seen in Lionsgate's Brothers, opposite Tobey Maguire, Jake Gyllenhaal and Natalie Portman, directed by Jim Sheridan