6:31pm PT by Lesley Goldberg, Michael O'Connell
'The Killing' Canceled -- Again
AMC has canceled The Killing for the second time.
"We have made the difficult decision not to move forward with a fourth season of The Killing," AMC said in a statement. "We want to thank our great partners at Fox Television Studios, creator Veena Sud, an extraordinary cast and the dedicated fans who watched."
After its revival, the third season of The Killing was largely in line with the second in ratings. The third season opened to a steady 1.8 million viewers (563,000 adults 18-49) before dipping in the middle and rising back up to 1.5 million viewers in its summer finale. That number bested the sophomore run's finale, but was still a long way from the record 2.7 million viewers that first tuned in to the drama when it opened on April 3, 2011.
"Fox Television Studios is extremely proud of all three seasons of The Killing. We’re especially gratified to have orchestrated a unique deal with AMC for season three that included a bold partnership with Netflix," FTVS said in a statement. "While we would have loved to produce a fourth season for AMC, FTVS is immensely grateful to everyone involved with this moving series: our brilliant cast, led by Mireille Enos, Joel Kinnaman and season three's Peter Sarsgaard, our stellar executive producer, Veena Sud, a remarkable writing and producing team, and a tireless, dedicated crew. Most of all, FTVS thanks the terrific fans of The Killing, who communicated their appreciation for the show throughout its run."
The Killing, which lost viewers' trust after failing to answer its central "Who killed Rosie Larsen?" question during its freshman season, returned for a second season to see its ratings fall nearly 30 percent, drawing the ax at AMC. Following a deal with FTVS, AMC and Netflix, the series was revived for a rebooted third season featuring a new case and largely new cast (only Enos and Kinnaman returned). The series, which was based on the Danish entry Forbrydelsen and developed under Sud, concluded season three's central case during its finale, serving as closure compared with its freshman run.
For AMC's part, the cabler has drama pilots Line of Sight, starring The Walking Dead's David Morrissey, in the works. The network recently ordered to series 1980s computer drama Halt & Catch Fire, starring Pushing Daisies' Lee Pace, as well as period drama Turn, based on the book Washington's Spies, from Nikita's Craig Silverstein. This summer, AMC will bid critical darling Breaking Bad farewell and will close the book on Mad Men in 2014. Freshman cop drama Low Winter Sun has failed to hold on to much of its Breaking Bad lead-in, which doesn't bode well for a second season.