How did the producers of FX’s comedy The League spent their recent hiatus? Praying that there will be a football season as their show revolves around a fantasy football league and working on a contingency plan in case the NFL and the players didn’t come to deal. “Plan B revolved around the guys losing their minds,” co-creator Jeff Schaffer said during a TCA panel for the show today. “Poor Andre (Paul Scheer) would’ve put all of his heart and soul into Fantasy NBA,” a reference to another professional sport whose season is in jeopardy. “The truth is … we prayed that there would be football, we desperately, desperately wanted there to be football, and we waited. And we waited and waited. FX was cool with us pushing our shooting date and the airdate so that we could make sure (there will be a football season).” With the labor dispute resolved just recently, the series is now so early in production on Season 3 that some of the footage in the promo reel shown was shot last night, Schaffer said. The uncertainty surrounding the NFL season over the past few months will be reflected on the show. “The lockout will be addressed front and center in the Oct. 6 season premiere — along with all of their opinions about it,” said co-creator Jackie Marcus Schaffer. The premiere also will feature Seth Rogen playing Rafi’s (Jason Mantzoukas) much-talked-about (but never seen) infamous friend Dirty Randy.
Despite the stress and the anxiety, something good creatively came out of the producers having to face the possibility of doing The League with no football season. “We realized we could write the show without football,” Jackie Schaffer said. “We do love fantasy football and we want to keep it as part of the show, but we want to continue exploring (the guys’) lives.”