With 3.3 Million viewers tuning into the pilot of Luck, HBO feels confident enough to order a second season of ten episodes. The show, which was written by Deadwood‘s David Milch and executive produced by Michael Mann, stars Dustin Hoffman and Nick Nolte (among others) in a series about a horse track and getting even. Though many shows have been cancelled after a high profile pilot failed to bring in viewers, rare is the show that is renewed so quickly renewed out the gate.

There are a number of reasons for a fast renewal – though with a show that centers around a horse track it’s hard not to make a betting joke. More than likely the cast is made up of talented working actors, and HBO wanted to make sure everyone was cemented for the second season. Nick Nolte was just nominated for an Oscar, and usually that leads to other offers. Locking the cast down was likely a necessity.

This also gives the creative team more breathing room. Milch’s previous HBO show Deadwood ended after three seasons because it was considered cost-prohibitive even though it’s one of the most critically acclaimed shows in television history, so perhaps this is a gesture of good faith. But with filmmakers like Todd Haynes, Martin Scorsese, Mann and Jody Hill finding a home at HBO, there’s no denying the network has found a new life as a home for great television from master filmmakers.

Did you watch Luck‘s Pilot?