fox Swivel will not return for a second season. The surprising cancellation comes after lengthy negotiations between the network and studio Warner Bros. Television.
swivel, starring Eliza Coupe, Ginnifer Goodwin and Maggie Q, had been seen as a strong bet for renewal. A Fox brass favorite, the show had a rare 100% on Rotten Tomatoes as one of the best-reviewed new airing series and was also a performer on Hulu, which the network was able to monetize.
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Immediately after cancellation, there’s the inevitable finger-pointing, with each party feeling like they’ve done everything they can to secure a renewal.
According to some sources, Fox was stoned Swivel and gave the one-camera show a conditional renewal, conditional on the series moving from Los Angeles to Vancouver to save money, which was forbidden because stars couldn’t uproot their families. Additionally, there was reportedly a second attempt by the network to renew the series by asking for a substantial reduction in licensing fees, which also failed as the studio failed to find a way to do so.
According to other sources, Fox has indicated its intention to renew Swivel but did not make a strong push to secure it. And while Hulu’s revenue has helped swivel, I hear the network has looked beyond that, as the pact is due to expire next year and its future is unclear.
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The disappearance of Swivel highlights the challenges of the broadcast model and the pressure that declining linear audiences are putting on renewal negotiations, especially with outside studios. Warner Bros. TV was able to strike a deal with Fox for the renewal of second multi-camera comedy Call Me Kat as well as freshman drama The cleaning lady and is finalizing a direct contract for a new comedy, Cindy Snow, which would be produced at a lower price in Atlanta.
Fellow indie Lionsgate TV was also able to secure renewal for its freshman comedy series, Welcome to Flatch, which is rated lower than Swivelmaking the cancellation of the latter even more surprising.
Created by Liz Astrof, Swivel followed three women (Coupe, Goodwin, Q) after the death of their childhood best friend. Faced with the reality that life is short, in desperate attempts to find happiness, they make a series of impulsive, misguided and self-indulgent decisions, strengthening their bond proving that it’s never too late to ruin your life.
Astrof Product Executive Swivel with Kaplan of Kapital and Dana Honor. Tristram Shapeero was director/executive producer of the pilot. The series was produced by Warner Bros. Television in association with Fox Entertainment