Ermey extends History Channel tour of duty

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - “Full Metal Jacket” star R. Lee Ermey, host of the History Channel’s “Mail Call,” has signed a two-year deal that will expand his presence on the air and online.

As part of the deal, the former U.S. Marine -- whose recent credits include Fox’s “House” and “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” remake and prequel -- will work with History to develop new series and specials. He will also play a major role in the Web sites and

“It’s such a rare combination to find a personality as large as R. Lee Ermey’s is in the entertainment world while simultaneously being as credible and respected as he is in the world of the military and armed services,” said Nancy Dubuc, executive vp and GM of History Channel.

In “Mail Call,” which debuted in 2002 as a half-hour series, Ermey answers viewers’ questions about the evolution of combat technology through on-location demonstrations and short segments that provide historical context. For its eighth season, which debuted March 16, the show expanded to an hour.

Dubuc said that Ermey’s new series will be in the spirit of “Mail Call” and in the military genre but have a different point of view and format. Details are being finalized.

In addition, will complement “Mail Call” and the other programming hosted by Ermey with additional footage, information and images. New Web site features will also include a sound board glossary, in which the user clicks on a favorite “Gunny” word to get its definition and also hear him repeat the word.

Ermey, who served 11 years’ active duty with the U.S. Marine Corps, has starred or appeared in about 60 films, including “Apocalypse Now,” “Seven,” “Dead Man Walking,” “Leaving Las Vegas” and the upcoming “Solstice.”

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter