Jeff Bridges Makes Long-Awaited Return After Cancer Diagnosis With FX Series ‘The Old Man’

by Emily Morgan

Even amid a cancer diagnosis, Jeff Bridges can’t be stopped. The highly-anticipated series, “The Old Man,” starring The Big Lebowski alum, officially has a trailer and a premiere date. “The Old Man” debuts on June 16 on FX. Viewers can also stream the series on Hulu the following day. 

The project marks the veteran actor’s first acting role since 2018. His career was on a brief hiatus after doctors diagnosed him with lymphoma in 2020. The show’s production originally began back in 2019. However, Bridges’ cancer diagnosis and COVID-19 put a pause on filming. 

In the series based on the best-selling novel of the same name by Thomas Perry, Bridges plays the role of a retired CIA officer. He’s been living off the grid and hiding from his former agency. After decades of living in isolation, he suddenly finds himself the target of an assassination. The CIA veteran partners with Zoe McDonald, played by Amy Brenneman, to learn the truth. 

In addition, fellow living legend John Lithgow plays FBI Assistant Director for Counterintelligence, Harold Harper. Alia Shawka stars as Agent Angela Adams, and Gbenga Akinnagbe plays Julian Carson.

“The Old Man” also marks Bridges’ first regular-series television role in his lengthy career. You know him from stand-alone hits such as The Big Lebowski, TRON, The Last Picture Show, Seabiscuit, True Grit, and Hell or High Water. In addition, he won an Academy Award for Crazy Heart. The new series was also his first project since 2018, when he starred in Bad Times at the El Royale.

Jeff Bridges Makes His Return to TV Despite Looming Cancer Diagnosis

During a virtual panel for the new show in April, Bridges expressed his gratitude to FX for their continued support as he recovers from his lymphoma diagnosis. 

 “As far as I’m concerned, FX and all of the team were so considerate and gave me all of the time I needed to heal and all the support I needed,” Bridges said. “The protocols – we were still in COVID – made me feel very safe and eager to get down to business and play.”

Additionally, Jeff Bridges spoke about the sympathy he felt for his character. Viewers will see that Chase is also struggling with his own condition: Alzheimer’s Disease. “In times like that, it seems like all your philosophies and spirituality comes to you. It tests you,” Bridges said. “All of that has been made more mature by that experience. I’ve always approached life the same way, [but this] made things sharper.”

On Monday, FX also announced premiere dates for the rest of its lineup. Season 4 of “What We Do In The Shadows” will premiere on July 12. The new series “Welcome to Wrexham” will debut on Aug. 23. A new season of FX’s “American Horror Story” will also premiere on Hulu on July 21. Fans will also get a new “Reservation Dogs” season on Aug. 3 on Hulu.