Thursday, June 08, 2017

Underground Too Expensive for OWN

Last week John Legend confirmed rumors that his critically acclaimed slave drama Underground had been canceled by WGN [click here if you missed that].

Oprah Winfrey explains why Underground won't find a home at the OWN network...

In a press conference discussing the next season of Queen Sugar Oprah admits,
“I can’t afford Underground. It cost twice as much to make as Queen Sugar. As a matter of fact, my dear friend John Legend called me personally and asked me about it, but we’d already been talking about how we could make it work, but it’s, like, $5 million an episode, so we can’t afford it. It’s not cheap, I think because it’s a period piece.”
"And also, it doesn't have - I think the highest number I saw was like a 0.4 or something. It has the social media following, but it doesn't have the numbers that can justify it as a business, for me, at this stage in my business, to spend $5 million an episode."
”We really tried to make it work. I wanted to make it work because I think it’s a good show. I wanted to be able to save that show, but it did not make good business sense for me.”