AMC has made what appears to be a risky move by moving western drama Hell of Wheels to Saturday night at 9pm. The third season of the show will premiere in the coveted slot, while various other classic western films including The Shootist and The Sons of Katie Elder will also air on the network in the coming weeks.

"This is a programmer's dream - to have a genre specific, 14-hour lead-in to one of your highest rated originals," said AMC president and GM Charlie Collier. Pretty boring dream if you ask us. Hell on Wheels averaged around 2.4 million total viewers in its second season, or 3.2 million when live plus 7 ratings are included, according to Broadcasting and Cable. The movie gives AMC original programming on three separate nights, with its signature drama Mad Men and Breaking Bad on Sundays forming a hugely strong hand. Unscripted programming will be confined to Thursdays, while Hell on Wheels will be the centre point of its Saturday output. 

Set in the mid to late 1800s, the show focuses on the construction of the first transcontinental railroad (Hell on Wheels) by the company men, surveyors, support works and mercenaries. It stars Anson Mount as Cullen Bohannon, a former Confederate soldier who works as a foreman on the railroad track. Cullen is also seeking to track down Union soldiers who murdered his wife and young son.

The third season of Hell on Wheels will premiere on Saturday August 3, 2013.

Anson MountAnson Mount At The Lucille Lortel Awards In New York City