The Wire by Paul Schiraldi/HBO The Wire by Paul Schiraldi/HBO

Three flashback mini-movies produced by David Simon, the creator of the acclaimed HBO series, have been released via Amazon.com as free streams available on the page for the complete fourth-season DVD set. On Jan. 15, the flicklets will also be made available via HBO On Demand, HBO.com, podcasts and related portals. In other words, there will be virtually no missing the backstories about Prop Joe and Omar as kids or McNulty's first day on the job.... In other cop-show news, Law & Order: SVU's Connie Nielsen has signed on to play the title character in A&E's proposed Danny Fricke series, about a hot detective who is promoted while diddling her boss. - Ben Katner