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Just two days after Fox lowered the axe on Terra Nova, studio 20th Television is scrambling to find a new home for the dinosaur drama. At least one potential buyer apparently likes the idea of continuing the series.
Fox late Monday opted not to move forward with the pricey Australia-shot drama — whose two-hour premiere was pegged at a price tag between $10 million and $20 million. Noting the Jason O’Mara-Stephen Lang starrer’s international appeal, studio 20th Television announced it would shop the big-budget series to other networks.
While discussions are merely preliminary, the move could make sense for Netflix as it continues its push into original scripted programming with fare including 20th Television’s Arrested Development, which the company resurrected in November.
Then again, Netflix’s name tends to surface any time a bubble series is canceled, as the streaming service is increasingly seen as a potential savior for shows whose ratings don’t justify traditional television network airtime.
While Terra Nova averaged 7.5 million total viewers and 2.6 million in the advertiser-coveted adults 18-49 demo in its 11-episode first season, it failed to catch on the way the network had hoped. Its two-hour finale matched a series low in the demo, drawing a 2.1 rating among adults 18-49 and an audience of 7.2 million.
Fox Entertainment president Kevin Reilly told reporters in January at the Television Critics Association’s winter press tour that the network was waiting to make big decisions as the fate of the Spielberg series until they had a better sense for midseason and development projects. “I do feel fortunate that we have some high-class problems,” he said at the time. “[Terra Nova] was an exciting bet to take and it’s proven that it was worthwhile.”
Meanwhile, 20th Television still holds an option on cast members including Lang and O’Mara. Co-star Christine Adams, meanwhile, has already found her next potential gig, joining ABC’s fashion drama pilot Americana.
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