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Why Jeff Bridges Was Originally Against Doing TV Series In His Career

The FX series "The Old Man" proved that Jeff Bridges is just as good on the small screen as he is in the realm of cinema. The action-packed, slow-burn thrill ride ended up being a hit, earning the highly coveted Certified Fresh designation from Rotten Tomatoes. While he has found success on the show, for the longest time, Bridges was against working in the world of television.

Jeff Bridges has undoubtedly been a force to be reckoned with on the big screen for years starring in numerous films and playing an array of fascinating characters. Some of Bridges's movies are most assuredly better than others, with some of his arguable standout endeavors including "The Big Lebowski," "Crazy Heart," "Hell or High Water," and "The Contender." The Academy Award winner has even lent his talents to the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the flick that started it all, "Iron Man." The man's career has been very impressive, but when fans examine his IMDb page, they will notice a lack of TV shows on his resume.

At first, that might sound strange because he clearly has a knack for it. "The Old Man" has been a big success earning a Season 2 renewal (via Deadline) and being praised by Decider as "a must-watch event." The actor does have some solid reasons for not jumping to the small screen sooner and some intriguing justification for finally making the bold move.

His father's experiences kept him off of TV work

Jeff Bridges talked to Variety about several topics, including retirement and how he battled COVID and cancer. But he also revealed why he was so hesitant to do TV work and what eventually changed his mind. "I originally resisted doing television. My father, Lloyd Bridges, had done several TV shows, and I saw how he was kind of frustrated with how quickly the shows were shot, and how they couldn't pay as much attention to detail, and so forth. But then I started to watch all this great content that is coming out of the tube these days. And I thought 'This is something to explore,' and I'm glad I did because I was not disappointed. There was really no differences in making the show than there was movies."

The way shows are made in the modern era is much different than when his father, Lloyd Bridges, was making shows like "Sea Hunt" and "The Lloyd Bridges Show" in the 1950s and '60s in terms of approach, execution, and budget. The new, almost cinema-esque strategy taken with television amid the streaming wars was enough to get Jeff Bridges to finally make the move, and many would agree his turn in the FX series has worked out well. Nick Allen from RogerEbert.com said, "This is a bold, wise series, with a knockout performance from Bridges leading the way," and The Playlist called "The Old Man" "The best TV of the year."