Louis CK Was Gonna Do A Full Season 5 Of “Louie,” But Then He Got High

The final episode of the ever-brilliant Louie‘s fifth season goes to air today, and you’d be forgiven for thinking that this particular season has been a bit… well… short.

Whilst the previous four seasons have all floated around the 13 to 14 episode mark, season 5 has only got eight instalments to its name. Normally that’s what you call a “red flag.” Seldom is it good news for a TV show that their network reduces the order of episodes – it happened to Parks & Recreation when it was on shaky ground, and it happened to Community as well.
Fortunately though, FX bosses are still enamoured with the critically acclaimed Louie – even if the ratings have been on the wane somewhat during this protracted season.
So what the hell happened that got Louie a shortened order of 8 episodes for Season 5? The short answer is that Louis CK got high.
Really, really, high.
Louis detailed the story during an Emmy consideration panel. The story goes that he had committed to delaying season five due to being burnt out thanks to a winter shooting schedule for season four. But on the eve of FX chief John Landgraf announcing the delay, Louis ripped several billion bongs and got a burst of inspirado, writing down pages upon pages of stories before calling up Landgraf to ask to push ahead. Hitflix details the whole thing in glorious fashion thusly.

“Originally, he wanted to delay season 5 so he could film it in the fall, since shooting previous seasons in winter — particularly the recent crippling New York winters — was wearing him down.

Then, the night before FX chief John Landgraf was going to announce the delay, C.K. smoked a lot of marijuana, felt a burst of inspiration for stories he wanted to tell this season, and wrote pages and pages on his computer, breaking out all of what he felt would be an amazing season. He called Landgraf and asked if he could produce on the original schedule; a frustrated Landgraf told him they had already allocated most of his budget to other shows, and the best they could do was a half-season. So C.K. agreed, Landgraf announced that, and in the sober light of day, C.K. finally read what he had written… and it was gibberish. He didn’t use a single idea or joke from it in making season 5.

Don’t do drugs, kids. Or, at least, don’t make big decisions while high.”

Real talk: We’ve all sunk a few brews and maybe sucked down a jazz cigarette or two and called/texted/emailed our bosses before. That’s about as universal a feeling as it gets. But even still, that one’s got to be in the top five.

420 blaze it, Louis.
Photo: Frederick M. Brown via Getty Images.