The SHOWTIME mini-series George & Tammy, based on the lives of country music legends George Jones and Tammy Wynette, premiered on Sunday (Dec. 4) with 3.3 million Live+Same Day linear viewers across Showtime, Paramount Network and CMT, with SHOWTIME calling the series the most-watched premiere in its nearly 50-year history.
The series, starring Jessica Chastain and Michael Shannon, chronicles the lives of one of country music’s most well-known couples. Though Jones and Wynette were wed for only six years (1969-1975), they are inextricably linked in the canon of country music, known for both their own solo hits, as well as a string of hit duets including “We’re Gonna Hold On,” “(We’re Not) The Jet Set,” “Golden Ring” and “Two Story House.” The series unfurls the both the tumultuous and romantic aspects of their relationship, with the first episode, “The Race Is On,” centering on Wynette’s whirlwind romance with Jones while still married to songwriter Don Chapel.
“George & Tammy made history as the most watched SHOWTIME premiere ever, thanks to the mesmerizing performances of Jessica Chastain and Michael Shannon,” said Chris McCarthy, president/CEO of Showtime & Paramount Media Networks, via a statement. “The riveting and complicated tale of the king and queen of county music is a testament to the creative firepower of Abe Sylvia and our incredible partners at Freckle Films and 101 Studios, led by David Glasser.”
The series is based on the book The Three of Us: Growing Up with Tammy and George, which was written by the couple’s daughter Georgette Jones, who is also a singer-songwriter (Wynette also had three children with former husband Euple Byrd). Future episodes will air exclusively on SHOWTIME on-air, on demand and streaming.