‘Oz’ Reunion, ‘Ziwe,’ ‘Small Axe’ Among 2021 ATX Television Festival Panels (EXCLUSIVE)

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An “Oz” reunion and panels for Amazon Prime Video’s “Small Axe,” as well as Showtime’s variety sketch show “Ziwe” are some of the first programs being scheduled at the 2021 ATX Television Festival, Variety has learned exclusively.

Additional panels include a “Faking It” reunion, a look at Fox’s new animated comedy “Housebroken,” the independent short-form comedy “Speech & Debate” and a number of themed panels. This year’s Award in Television eXcellence will be presented to Michael J. Fox, and Tubi has joined the festival as a supporting partner.

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As this year’s honoree, the Emmy-winning Fox will join the festival for an intimate, retrospective conversation that spans his iconic performances on everything from “Family Ties” to “Spin City,” as well as features his guest roles on “The Good Wife” and “Rescue Me,” and dives into his memoir, “No Time Like The Future.”

The ATX/Showtime marquee conversation for “Ziwe” will feature the titular writer, comedian, actor, singer, influencer, activist and explore her rise from a social media breakout star to the star and creator of her own premium cable show.

The “Housebroken” event will consist of a screening and Q&A with co-creator, actor and executive producer Clea DuVall; executive producer and actor Sharon Horgan; co-creators and executive producers Gabrielle Allan and Jennifer Crittenden, and actors Nat Faxon and Sam Richardson (and additional panelists to be announced). They will discuss the show that centers on a group of neighborhood pets and stray animals who make up a therapy group.

For “Small Axe,” creator, director, executive producer, co-writer and co-editor Steve McQueen will be in conversation with writer, director and producer Channing Godfrey Peoples to discuss the five individual films that make up the anthology series.

“Speech & Debate” will premiere its third installment at the festival. Writer Kamen Edwards and director Cassandra Jean Amell will be joined by actors Stephen Amell, Aisha Tyler and John Barrowman to discuss the “Speech & Debate: Legacy” episode, as well as the process of creating independent content during a pandemic.

When it comes to reunions, the “Oz” event, which was originally planned for 2020, will look back on drama’s HBO run with creator/executive producer Tom Fontana, director/actor Terry Kinney and cast members Lee Tergesen, Dean Winters, Harold Perrineau and Kirk Acevedo. (Additional participants will be announced at a later date.)

Meanwhile, “Faking It” creator and showrunner Carter Covington will come back together with cast members Rita Volk, Katie Stevens, Michael Willett, Yvette Monreal and Sophia Ali, with additional panelists to be announced, to reminisce over the three-season MTV series that included ​television’s first intersex main character.

And this year’s themed panels will include “Beyond the Scares: Emotional Catharsis & Healing in Horror,” “Growing Up Is Hard: A New Generation of YA Protagonists,” “Mad as Hell: TV’s Dangerous Women,” “The Queer Gaze,” “Pandemic Proof: Adult Animation,” “Showrunner State of the Union” and “Buying & Selling with 20/20 Hindsight.” No panelists for these have been announced yet, though typically the festival includes a combination of executives, producers and performers who are appearing on other panels to be apart of the themed ones, as well.

This year’s special 10th anniversary event for the ATX Television Festival will take place virtually June 11-20. Tickets can be obtained at https://atxfestival.com/attend/register/.

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