‘The Untitled Richard Linklater Project’ Is Actually a Docuseries About Animal Rescue

In keeping with Linklater tradition, it’s set in Austin, Texas.
January 13, 2020, 6:34pm
Lars Niki / Stringer / Getty Images

Richard Linklater is one of the greatest living filmmakers, and much of his oeuvre has been an attempt to remind people that he lives in Texas. His 1991 breakthrough Slacker, 1993's Dazed and Confused, 1998's The Newton Boys, 2001's Waking Life, 2011's Bernie, 2014's Boyhood, and 2015's Everybody Wants Some!! have of course all been set in his home state. But now, the 59-year-old director has executive produced a new docuseries at CBS All Access with filmmaker Bill Guttentag and guess what? It takes place in Austin, Texas.

“The Untitled Richard Linklater Project" is set to be a 10-episode series, and according to CBS, it "will provide a window onto the colorful and diverse world of animal rescue through moving, humorous and powerful stories of animals and the humans who love them.”

Because this a docuseries about animal rescue, we probably won't be getting long tracking camera shots and mile-a-minute existential conversations about love and life or even an Ethan Hawke cameo, but this is still exciting news. In a statement, Linklater says, “I come to this project hoping to shine a light on the folks I’ve met who are making a difference everyday in the lives of unwanted, abused, and disabled animals." He adds, "What strikes me most is the joy and discovery on both sides of the relationship between the animals and their human caregivers. These are inspirational stories that I believe will be a positive force in the world.” Translation: This series is definitely going to make you cry.

While he's nowhere near getting "animal rights" tattooed on his forearms like Moby, Linklater has been meat-free since 1985 and has been a supporter of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). This also isn't Linklater's first foray into television, either. In 2012, he directed a six-episode travel show called Up To Speed that aired on Hulu. He's currently working on a feature film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's musical Merrily We Roll Along starring Ben Platt and Beanie Feldstein, which is not set in Texas but will reportedly take 20 years to finish.