"Nip/Tuck" will come to an end after the plastic surgery drama's sixth season wraps in early 2011, cable channel FX said Tuesday.
The network said serialized dramas, such as "Nip/Tuck," have a much different storytelling model than nonserialized shows such as "Law & Order" or "CSI."
"If you tried to do 150 episodes of 'The Sopranos,' you would begin to diminish the quality of those shows," FX president/GM John Landgraf said during the network's presentation at the Television Critics Assn. press tour in Beverly Hills.
"The David Chases ('Sopranos') and Shawn Ryans ('The Shield'), they're taking on social commentary and grand sweeping questions. If we want to go after that brass ring, we have to accept they have limited shelf life."
FX has ordered 19 additional episodes beyond the current 22-episode season that will mark final season. The show will end its run with a total of 100 episodes in early 2011, with creator/executive producer Ryan Murphy signed on through the last episode.
"Nip/Tuck" has already aired 14 episodes of its current fifth season; the remaining eight are set to premiere in January.
‘Riches’ still in limboAdditionally, FX said it ordered 13 episodes of a new scripted series, "Testees," to debut October 9 following "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia." "Testees" centers on two friends in their early 30s who earn a living as medical guinea pigs.
In casting news, FX said Michael J. Fox has signed on for an arc in "Rescue Me," starting with the fifth-season premiere in the spring. He will play the wheelchair-bound boyfriend of Janet Gavin (Andrea Roth), Tommy's (Denis Leary) estranged wife.
Marcia Gay Harden is joining Timothy Olyphant and William Hurt as series regulars for the second season of "Damages." She will play a high-powered attorney who goes up against Glenn Close's attorney character.
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Meanwhile, Ted Danson is set to reprise his role as Arthur Frobisher in the legal drama series for several episodes, though it's unclear whether his character survived a shooting in the first-season finale or will appear in flashbacks. (Landgraf said only that his character is "not terribly healthy," and producers didn't clarify the matter when asked the question on a "Damages" panel later Tuesday morning.)
FX said no decision has been made as to a third season of "The Riches," which performs better than AMC's "Mad Men" and "Breaking Bad" and Showtime's "Dexter" but fell 44% in ratings from Season 1 to Season 2.
"We have a much higher bar for threshold for success than Showtime or HBO or AMC," said Landgraf. "So one of the things I'm always struggling to balance is, do I stay with something like 'The Riches' that I'm really proud of that has some real strengths and weaknesses, or do I open up the slot?"