12:15pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
It's Official: 'Hart of Dixie' Canceled After Four Seasons
It's official: The fourth season of The CW's Hart of Dixie was its last.
Created by Leila Gerstein, Hart of Dixie had been bounced around the schedule in its third season, where it shifted to Fridays as a midseason entry as the younger-skewing network gave its freshman fare its prime real estate. Season four returned in January with an abbreviated 10-episode run before going on hiatus and returning with its final three episodes in March.
Gerstein used her Twitter platform in March to announce that the finale would be "tremendously satisfying" and note that given her love for the series, she "would have gone 17 years."
Although the Southern-set medical drama, led by Rachel Bilson, has remained under the radar for its four-season run, the romantic dramedy was one of the network's best-performing series on Hulu, which is becoming an increasingly valuable platform as The CW courts its key 18-34 demographic.
The news comes after stars Scott Porter and Wilson Bethel had been public about the show's end game.
Tweeted Porter: "That's a wrap on Wilson & #3Amigos. Love these dudes. So proud. #TearsWereShed #HartOfDixie @WilsonBethel @1loveCress http://instagram.com/p/t1QIgaPqNg/." And "And the sun sets on #BlueBell. Thanks for an amazing 4 years. #HartOfDixie http://instagram.com/p/t39rXBPqGX/."
For his part, Bethel already has a new series regular role lined up with Dixie executive producers Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, signing on to co-star in ABC's 10-episode drama Astronaut Wives Club. He also has a blind script deal with The CW and Dixie producers Warner Bros. Television to pen a drama project for the network.
The CW also canceled it's other Friday drama, The Messengers, after one season. The ensemble drama, starring Shantel VanSanten, Sofia Black-D'Elia, centered on a group of seemingly unconnected strangers who die from an energy pulse after a mysterious object crashes down to Earth, earned the final slot on the network's roster last season.
The drama from CBS Television Studios was held for a mid-April Friday premiere and opened to little fanfare — and a paltry 1.18 million total viewers and a 0.3 in the demo. It marked the lowest-rated in-season scripted series premiere on the network since the canceled Cult bowed with the same demo and 940,000 viewers in February 2013. The debut was also lower than The CW's recent Friday bow of Hart of Dixie, which returned for its fourth season with a 0.4 in the demo.
Meanwhile, The CW has already renewed the bulk of its scripted programming with The 100, Arrow, Beauty and the Beast, The Originals, Reign, Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries, The Flash and Jane the Virgin earning early pickups alongside Beauty and the Beast, which scored a renewal for summer 2016, and iZombie.