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CCI | Showtime Panel, Featuring Dexter, Shameless And Homeland

by  in TV News Comment
CCI | Showtime Panel, Featuring <i>Dexter</i>, <i>Shameless</i> And <i>Homeland</i>
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Showtime’s annual presentation at Comic-Con International in San Diego kicked off Thursday to a packed room with news about its returning series Shameless, which begins its second season in early 2012. On hand were stars William H. Macy (Frank Gallagher), Emmy Rossum (Fiona Gallagher) and Justin Chatwin (Steve) and Executive Producer John Wells.

Fans of the show know that Chatwin’s mysterious character took off at the end of the season, and his absence will have great ramifications for Fiona. “She will run through a few boys,” Rossum said. Don’t be too worried about Steve’s fate: Although he’s yet to film any scenes for the second season, Chatwin will return sometime during the year.

Amy Smart and Joan Cusack will also reprise their Shameless roles, with the return of Cusack’s Sheila Jackson potentially spelling trouble for Macy’s Frank, considering his lurid interactions with her daughter. Fans of the British series on which the show is based shouldn’t expect a remake of the original Season 2. The American version will go in its own direction next year, abandoning its U.K. predecessor.

Next up on the slate for Showtime was a sneak peek at the new original drama Homeland. Loosely based on an Israeli series called Prisoners of War, it stars Claire Danes, Damian Lewis, Mandy Patinkin and Comic-Con favorite Morena Baccarin, who accompanied Executive Producer Howard Gordon to the panel.

Gordon and Baccarin brought a trailer for the new show, which will tell the story of Nicholas Brody (Lewis), a recently released prisoner of war from Afghanistan. Upon his return to the United States, he’s celebrated as a hero. However, all may not be as it seems, as a CIA agent played by Danes has obtained information that he may have turned to the other side during his imprisonment and could be using his newfound fame to further the machinations of al Qaeda.

Baccarin, who plays Brody’s wife Jessica, discussed the difficulty of getting into the character of a woman whose husband has been missing in action for several years. As an exercise, she “wrote letters as Jessica Brody to Nicholas Brody” but never sent them to Lewis. Homeland debuts on Oct. 2, following the season premiere of Dexter.

Speaking of everyone’s favorite serial killer, Dexter Morgan will come back with a vengeance — and with a need for some religion. Fans shouldn’t worry, though — Dexter hasn’t lost his faith in Harry’s code, but he will make attempts to help his son Harrison avoid following in his footsteps.

The room was filled with thunderous applause as cast members Michael C. Hall, C.S. Lee, David Zayas, James Remer and Colin Hanks and producers Sara Colleton and Scott Buck took the stage. As in previous seasons, there will be some new blood filling the streets of Miami, as Hanks, Mos Def and Edward James Olmos join the cast to wreak havoc on our antihero’s life.

The trailer for Season 6 (below) was screened for the rapturous crowd, and featured tons of religious iconography, including an opening scene in which Dexter’s newest victim, chest emblazoned with a tattoo of Jesus, tells Dexter that a divorce was too expensive so he opted to instead kill his wife.

During the Q&A portion, the crowd went wild as Mos Def sneaked into the room to join the panel. Def said of his experience filming the show, “It has been a high point for me.”

Dexter returns Oct. 2 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Showtime.

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