7:58pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Kate McKinnon Departs Hulu's Elizabeth Holmes Drama 'The Dropout'
Kate McKinnon has dropped out of Hulu's The Dropout.
The Saturday Night Live Emmy winner has departed the limited series about Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes. McKinnon was to have starred as Holmes and exec produced the series that is based on the ABC News podcast of the same name.
Sources say the Hulu entry, which was among the originals touted during Disney's December investor day, is moving forward without McKinnon. A search is under way for a new star and production is aiming to begin this summer. It's unclear why McKinnon departed the drama, which she was to have begun filming after wrapping SNL's current season in May.
The Dropout was one of two series McKinnon had lined up outside of SNL. She remains set to star in and exec produce NBCUniversal's Joe Exotic series, which is earmarked for a 2022 debut across NBC, USA and streamer Peacock. McKinnon signed on to The Dropout before boarding Joe Exotic.
Based on the ABC News podcast, the limited series traces how Holmes raised hundreds of millions to fund the biotech start-up and became a media darling while hiding the fact that her touted blood-testing machine didn't really work. It was to have been the first series regular role for McKinnon. The drama is It's based on an ABC News podcast of the same name, which also was the basis for a 20/20 episode.
The series is produced by Fox Searchlight's year-old TV division. Podcast host Rebecca Jarvis, ABC News' chief business, economics and technology correspondent, will exec produce with McKinnon. Taylor Dunn and Victoria Thompson, who produced the podcast, will also be EPs of the series.