4:30pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Starz Cancels 'Magic City'
It's the end of the line for Starz's Magic City.
The premium cable network has opted to not move forward with a third season of the period drama.
"Magic City will be concluding its two-season run on Starz with Friday's series finale. We are tremendously proud of the series and everyone involved. From the writers, to the cast and crew, it has been an incredible collaboration," Starz said in a statement. "This was a story born from Mitch Glazer's singular vision of Miami, the Magic City of his childhood, and we are grateful to him for bringing it to life on Starz. The season's story arc will allow us to deliver a satisfying conclusion to the series, and we thank all the fans who checked in to the Miramar Playa."
Magic City was one of the network's first original scripted dramas that was initially ordered direct to series -- a pattern that has become the trademark of its development process. The network renewed Magic City for a second season ahead of its series premiere, as it did with Kelsey Grammer's Boss and most recently with Michael Bay's upcoming pirate drama Black Sails.
Speaking to reporters last week at the semi-annual Television Critics Association's summer press tour, Starz CEO Chris Albrecht reiterated that the network was "fans of the show."
"Our policy process is one or two seasons of a show to really get behind something if we like the work. We’re now evaluating all the options with Magic City," he said. "But, like I said, we have a couple of little surprises in our pocket in store, so I can’t reveal too much other than you’ll have the answer to your question soon."
For Starz, the cancellation comes as the network continues to ramp up production on its original programming. The network has Black Sails and the recently renewed DaVinci's Demons among its originals set for 2014 as well as Ron Moore's Outlander, Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson's Power and Fortitude also set for next year as it makes a push to have 50 hours of originals on the air.
Magic City, starring Jeffrey Dean Morgan, was never a strong performer in the ratings -- and its Friday time slot was rarely a help to fellow axed drama Boss -- which also ended its run after its sophomore season. (Recent talks for a two-hour movie to wrap the series also fell through.) Magic City's series premiere fetched 965,000 total viewers over the entire weekend in 2012, softer than Boss, Spartacus and DaVinci's Demons.
First runs of Magic City have fetched between 300,000 and 500,000 viewers in the Friday hour, though a recent episode dipped to a near low of 320,000 viewers.