Louis C.K. on Louie's New Attitude and Guest Turns by Jerry Seinfeld, Robin Williams and More

FX’s comedy/drama hybrid gem, Louie, returns tonight for its third season (airing at 10:30 pm/9:30c). Fret not, fans: The offbeat series’ trend of being unlike anything else on television — in the best possible way — continues in this latest batch of episodes.

Here, creator, star and all-around funny man Louis C.K. discusses why Season 3 of his quirky comedy is different than previous cycles and reveals which big-name (emphasis on the “big”) guest stars will be dropping by.

HAPPY-GO-LOUIE | Don’t worry, the titular comedian isn’t suddenly going to change from the sadsack we know and love. He will, however, find a tinge more happiness in his day-to-day life. “He’s taking a little bit [of a] bigger swing at being somebody,” C.K. told reporters during a recent conference call, noting that this season is “more about missing being with family and in a relationship… That kind of stuff.” And never is “that kind of stuff” more apparent than in the season’s third episode — one C.K. is particularly proud of — which finds a Miami-bound Louie making fast friends with a young local and loving it. “This Miami episode was so fun… I spend enough time on screen looking depressed, so I think it was OK to let me, you know, smile,” he joked. “All of the music [in the episode] is original; we made it with our musicians. A lot went into creating the colors and the energy of Miami.”

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WIFE SWAP | Louie’s much-mentioned ex-wife plays a larger role this season — and, in typical Louie fashion, the actress who plays her isn’t only a different one than we’ve seen in the past, she’s African-American. (For those who don’t watch regularly, his two daughters are both white and blonde.) The reason? Well, there really isn’t one. “The show needs to keep going, so I’m introducing new elements this year,” C.K. explained. “The show has really broken off into fiction, much more last year and this year, so it’s really not drawing from my life anymore. This ex-wife character is not anything like my real ex-wife.” The multihyphenate added that when he was using his real-life as a template, he “didn’t want to write about an ex-husband and wife. So, I arrived at a version of that for this character that I thought was really good; this woman who is well put together and an added pressure to his life… And the stories that I wrote really led me to this actress (Susan Kelechi Watson), [who] was so good.”

YADDA YADDA YADDA | Jerry Seinfeld has booked a major arc in Louie‘s Season 3, and a tight-lipped C.K. cautioned fans to expect the unexpected. “Episodes 10, 11 and 12 of the season are going to be a whole story of their own that is basically three parts,” he revealed. “Jerry is in those, and I don’t want to say anything about any of it because it’s got a lot of guest stars and a lot happens. It’s a big turn for the character, [and] a cool, fun story… But what [Jerry] did was very different than what you’re used to seeing Jerry do. He turned in a really great performance.”

EVERYONE ELSE | Speaking of guest stars, look for, well, “a lot of them,” C.K. teased. The second episode of the season is a particular standout, with an hilariously raunchy turn from Oscar winner Melissa Leo. “I love Melissa Leo very much as an actor, so she was in my head [when] I wrote the episode,” he shared. “I wrote it for the kind of women in Boston that I knew growing up… She just really responded to the material. She showed up and approached it the way I wanted her to, as an actress. On my show, there’s not really a comedy muscle you have to use. We play scenes straight for comedy — our eyebrows don’t go up like they do on most comedies. So, somebody like her is perfect for my show.” Also dropping by later this season is Robin Williams, though details surrounding his role are still under wraps.

Thoughts on Louie Season 3? Hit the comments!

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