After 20 years, Clooney back on TV with 'Catch 22'

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on May 14, 2019 - Duration: 01:46s

After 20 years, Clooney back on TV with 'Catch 22'

Twenty years after he left medical drama 'ER', George Clooney returns to television with an adaptation of Joseph Heller’s 'Catch-22'.

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After 20 years, Clooney back on TV with 'Catch 22'

[SOUND FROM 'CATCH 22' HULU SERIES] How do you adapt a novel from 1961 to make it relevant for today's TV audience?

That's not exactly a Catch-22 situation, but it is a dilemma - even with a novel as famous as Catch-22, Joseph Heller's satirical take on war and bureaucracy.

Having George Clooney as a producer and star helps.

[SOUND FROM 'CATCH 22' HULU SERIES] The new limited series, premiering Friday on Hulu, is the second major adaptation after the 1970 film, starring Alan Arkin, which bombed at the box office and with critics.

Clooney, who began his career on TV, sees the small screen as a better fit.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) ACTOR GEORGE CLOONEY, SAYING: "It's hard to tell this story as complex as it is in a two hour movie.

So it's never been about the medium, although television and streaming has gotten much more interesting and more fun, it was more about telling the story.

It's about telling good stories." Others in the production, which include Kyle Chandler and Hugh Laurie, see a 58-year-stretch between novel and series as a drop in the bucket.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) DIRECTOR AND EXECUTIVE PRODUCER GRANT HESLOV SAYING: "Is there a bad time to talk about sort of the craziness of war and the madness of war?

I don't know, I don't think so.

And in the larger context, is it bad to talk about sort of the craziness of the world, really?" [SOUND FROM 'CATCH 22' HULU SERIES] The series marks Clooney's return to TV for the first time in 20 years.

So what do he and wife Amal like to watch at home?

Take a guess.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) ACTOR GEORGE CLOONEY, SAYING: 'Uh, old reruns of 'ER'.

She goes, 'God, you've really gotten old!'

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