5:00pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Utopia' Canceled at Amazon
Utopia isn't so utopian.
Amazon has canceled its Gillian Flynn-produced drama series after one season, capping what was a more than six-year journey to the screen.
Originally developed and picked up straight to series in 2014 at HBO with David Fincher reuniting with his Gone Girl collaborator Flynn, the drama about a group of comic book fans who stumble on a deadly pandemic landed at Amazon four years later. Flynn had an overall deal with HBO and moved it to Amazon along with Utopia, though Fincher was no longer attached.
Amazon, like other streamers, does not release traditional viewership data. The drama was not met with warm reviews when it launched Sept. 25. The series has a 51 percent rating among critics on RottenTomatoes.com and, perhaps in a sign of a failure to cut through, does not have an audience score. In her review, THR TV critic Inkoo Kang called Utopia "Too hackneyed to be timely, too grim to be escapist."
John Cusack starred in the nine-episode remake of Dennis Kelly's British series of the same name. The cast included Sasha Lane, Rainn Wilson, Ashleigh LaThrop, Desmin Borges, Farrah Mackenzie and Christopher Denham. Utopia marked best-selling author Flynn's debut as a showrunner. She exec produced alongside Jessica Rhoades (Sharp Objects), Sharon Hall, Karen Wilson and Kelly. The series was a co-production between Endemol Shine North America, its U.K. production studio Kudos and Amazon Studios.
The decision to cancel Utopia after one season arrives after Amazon recently picked up sci-fi drama The Expanse for a sixth and final season. The retail giant and streamer will also say farewell to Bosh and Goliath in 2021. Amazon's scripted slate includes returning series Hunters, The Boys, Carnival Row, Jack Ryan and the forthcoming The Lord of the Rings, A League of Their Own and The Peripheral, among others.