Deadwood is an American western television series created, produced, and largely written by David Milch, that aired on the premium cable network HBO from March 21, 2004, to August 27, 2006, spanning 36 episodes and three seasons. The series, set in the 1870s in Deadwood, South Dakota, before and after the area's annexation by the Dakota Territory, charts Deadwood's growth from camp to town, incorporating themes ranging from the formation of communities to western capitalism. The show features a large ensemble cast, and many historical figures appear as characters, such as Seth Bullock, George Crook, Wyatt Earp, E. B. Farnum, George Hearst, Wild Bill Hickok, Calamity Jane, Jack McCall, Sol Star, Al Swearengen, and Charlie Utter. The plot lines involving these characters include historical truths as well as substantial fictional elements. Milch used actual diaries and newspapers from 1870s Deadwood residents as reference points for characters, events, and the look and feel of the show. Some of the characters are fully fictional, although they may have been based on actual persons.
Deadwood received wide critical acclaim, particularly for Milch's writing and Ian McShane's co-lead performance, and is now regarded as one of the greatest TV dramas of all time. It also won eight Emmy Awards (in 28 nominations) and one Golden Globe. TV Guide ranked it #8 on their 2013 list of 60 shows that were "Cancelled Too Soon". There were initial plans to conclude the series with two TV films, but those plans never came to fruition. In 2015, talks resumed between HBO and Milch, and in January 2016, HBO green-lit a script to be written. In April 2017, Ian McShane confirmed that the script was complete and now in the hands of HBO, and if it does not happen, "blame them," he said.
The show was produced by Red Board Productions and Roscoe Productions in association with HBO and Paramount Network Television.