After Facing Pressure, Showtime Reschedules James Comey Miniseries to Before Election Day

Sony Pictures Classics
Sony Pictures Classics

Showtime is giving voters ample time before Election Day to re-live James Comey’s battle against President Donald Trump. The premium cable network is moving up its two-part limited series based  Comey’s memoirs by a full two months, after originally setting a premiere for late November.

The Comey Rule, adapted from the disgraced former FBI director’s book A Higher Loyalty, is now scheduled to debut on Sunday, September 27, and Monday, September 28, the ViacomCBS-owned cable channel announced.

Showtime typically re-airs its original shows numerous times following their premieres.

The limited series stars Jeff Daniels as Comey and Irish actor Brendan Gleeson as President Donald Trump. The show co-stars Peter Coyote as Robert Mueller and Holly Hunter as Sally Yates.

The change comes after writer-director Billy Ray reportedly complained to his staff about Showtime’s original decision to air it after Election Day.

“We all were hoping to get this story in front of the American people months before the coming election,” Ray wrote in a staff email obtained by multiple news outlets. “Word started drifting back to me that a decision about our airdate had been made at the very highest levels of Viacom: All talk of our airing before the election was suddenly a ‘non-starter.’”

His pressure appears to have worked. A Showtime spokeswoman told the New York Times earlier this week that “several changes to our schedule” were on the horizon, including a “likely” pre-Election Day move for The Comey Rule.

Comey served as the head of the FBI from 2013 to 2017, when he was fired by President Trump. It was later revealed that Comey violated bureau policy by leaking several memos with classified information to an associate with instructions to pass the information to a reporter.

Since his dismissal, Comey has publicly advocated for impeachment proceedings against the president. A Higher Loyalty was published in 2018.

FX Networks said earlier this year that it is delaying its planned miniseries on Monica Lewinsky and the Bill Clinton impeachment until after Election Day. The network’s president blamed scheduling difficulties for producer Ryan Murphy.

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