Friday, June 1, 2018

Paramount Network Officially Scraps 'Heathers' Anthology Series

After experiencing multiple delays, Paramount Network has today made the decision not to air the original anthology series Heathers based on the film of the same name.

Heathers was originally developed for and shot its pilot at TV Land. The final cut of that first episode came in long and was picked up as TV Land's first hourlong show. With the reshuffling at Viacom that saw Spike become the Paramount Network, it was decided that Heathers would air there instead as the network was hoping to generate prestige content and acclaim - in the vain of FX, AMC, TNT and USA.

Heathers was set as the second scripted show to debut on the Paramount Network - following the miniseries Waco in January 2018. It was originally going to premiere on March 7. Then, the cable network decided to delay the series launch following the tragic Parkland shooting. A new premiere date of July 10 was announced a month or so after that decision was made. And now, continuing stories about gun violence in schools has prompted the network to pull the show completely. The executives no longer feel comfortable being seen as a brand targeting young people and supporting their causes while also airing a show that depicts so much violence in a high school.

However, Paramount Network is shopping the series to other outlets. Production on the 10-episode first season has been complete for a long time. Five episodes were already sent out to critics with a handful of reviews posted before the decision was made to delay the March premiere. Moreover, a writers room has already been up and running for the second season - which would tell a completely different story and feature a new cast of characters. As such, Paramount is hoping another outlet will pick up the series. They also wish to maintain an ownership stake in the series which could complicate those negotiations.

The cast for the first season included Grace Victoria Cox, James Scully, Melanie Field, Brendan Scannell and Jasmine Mathews.

Jason Micallef developed the series. He executive produces with Tom Rosenberg, Brad Gardener, Gary Lucchesi and director Leslye Headland. Lakeshore Entertainment produces.