American musical drama “Nashville” has been cancelled by ABC network after four seasons, as confirmed by The Hollywood Reporter (THR). “The Family” and “Galavant” have been axed as well, reports THR. The reason may have been the cast members speaking out against a recent anti-LGBT law that was passed in Tennessee. Connie Britton, the star and co-executive producer of the show, had said that the legislation was “extremely harmful to everyone.”
“I shoot a TV show in Tennessee, and honestly, if they proceed with this, I’m not necessarily going to feel comfortable working there,” Connie Britton said, as quoted by THR. “That is a tricky situation because of course we employ a lot of people in the state, and you certainly don’t want to have to interrupt that, but at the same time, this is the only way that we can have our voices be heard.”
It seems either the Tennessee authorities asked the producers to stop the show or the producers pulled the plug themselves, not wanting to be embroiled in a controversy. Noteworthy is the fact that “Nashville” was produced by Lionsgate, the only show from an outside studio.
However, it is still a surprising turn of events considering the fact that the show was very popular and had a high rating on ABC. It also earned additional revenue from soundtracks and concert tours, notes THR. Deadline had also reported on March 23 that “Thirtysomething” creators Edward Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz were announced as showrunners for season 5, replacing Dee Johnson.
Well, it is quite clear that even in this apparently progressive day and age, controversial laws that threaten the liberty of an entire community of people are being enacted. “Nashville” was clearly a victim of it. Somehow, ABC or Lionsgate was unable to rise above the occasion and stand by their cast members’ honest opinions.
The Tennessean writes that the show had been a boon for local tourism and cinema production. “We are incredibly disappointed to hear the news that ABC has not renewed the show ‘Nashville’ for another season,” Nashville Mayor Megan Barry said in a written statement. She added that “The show has been an enormously successful promotional tool for our city, which is why the state of Tennessee and Metro Nashville were prepared to support production for a fifth season to be filmed here.” This means it was ABC’s sole decision to nix the show.
“This is a loss for ABC and for the millions of fans across the world who have grown to love this show. We have enjoyed hosting the cast and crew of the show over the last four years and look forward to future opportunities for film and television production here in Nashville,” Mayor Barry said. It is a sad day for fans of Connie Britton’s show indeed. “The Family” and “Galavant” have also been discontinued.