4:09pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
WE tv Yanks 'Sex Box,' Mulls "Potential" Format Changes (Exclusive)
WE tv is packing up its Sex Box — for the time being.
The AMC Networks-owned cable network has pulled the controversial dating series from its schedule, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
"Sex Box was a bold programming swing that broke new ground but did not connect with large numbers of viewers," WE tv said in a statement. "We are working with our production partners on a potential reformatted version of the show and are thankful for the efforts of everyone involved."
The nine-episode series was based on the U.K. show of the same name and followed real couples whose relationships are on the rocks. The couples have sex in a soundproof box and, immediately afterward, address their issues with a panel of experts for a series of emotionally honest conversations about intimacy.
Sex Box opened on a Friday in late February and debuted to 378,000 total viewers — a modest uptick compared to a year ago, when the cabler ran David Tutera's CELEBrations.
Naturally, the watchdog group Parents Television Council launched a national petition in January, ahead of the show's debut, demanding that WE tv be removed from cable subscription bundles over Sex Box's racy content.
After four episodes, the series was moved out of primetime to a midnight slot — a first for WE tv.
Five episodes of the series have aired, produced by Relativity Television, with the last running March 27.
The move to pull Sex Box comes as broadcast and cable networks have been struggling to launch a new reality format. The series marked the latest twist on the dating genre, where VH1 most recently made headlines with Dating Naked.