Starz has never been the biggest player in the cable game, but it’s produced several hits over the years, among them Spartacus, Black Sails and the channel’s crowning glory Outlander, the time-traveling romance show based on the books by Diana Gabaldon.
But the network is currently going through a bit of a rough patch, as The Hollywood Reporter brings us the news that it’s canceling three ongoing original series and scrapping another before it makes it to air. The three shows getting the axe include the pro wrestling drama Heels, starring Arrow’s Stephen Amell; the comedy Run the World and the dramedy Blindspotting.
All of those show had recently aired their second seasons. Starz is also pulling the plug on The Venery of Samantha Bird, which shut down production when the Hollywood writers strike was called in May. It will not resume.
Starz cancels four TV shows. What about Outlander?
Starz didn’t offer much comment on why they were making these moves, but the writers and actors strikes may have something to do with them. Starz doesn’t have a bottomless war chest, and not being able to move forward with new episodes of some of these shows may have made them look financially unsustainable.
If that is the case, it’s kind of ironic, but it looks like the writers strike is finally wrapping up. We’ll probably see more fallout in the coming months as Hollywood adjusts to a new normal. And there’s still the actors strike to keep an eye on.
Starz still has original programming to fall back on, including several spinoffs of its crime show Power and of course Outlander, which has a season and a half left before it wraps up for good. Starz has a spinoff — Blood of My Blood — planned to keep those good times rolling.