The move marks the network's exit from original scripted content.
May 30, 2017
It is being reported that WGN America has cancelled Underground, its last remaining scripted original, after two seasons. The move had been somewhat expected after the cable network axed its top-rated series Outsiders last month.
The move to clean house comes as a result of a recent decision by WGN America to focus on a more diverse programming strategy aimed at reaching a broader audience. What the means exactly, is not yet clear, though it is speculated that the cable network will shift to existing programming that is looking for a second outlet and shows with reduced licensing fees.
As for the future of Underground, word is that Sony Pictures Television has been actively looking to find it a new home. Their efforts have so far not yielded any results, with BET and OWN reportedly having already passed on it.
Set in 1857, Underground focused on a plantation in Georgia and a group of slaves who plan a daring 600-mile escape from their captors. While on the run they are helped by an abolitionist couple who operate a station on the Underground Railroad.
07/01/17 at 05:06pm
We can continue to blame money hungry stations but It's not all WGN's fault, as good programming like the outsiders, Salem, and the underground are cancelled, we continue to have mindless shows as keep up with the Kardashians, the bachelor, the bachelorette and all of the housewives shows.and let's not mention the love and hip hop ratchetness. The acting on this show was excellent, articulate, knowledgeable and informative. Maybe that's the direction they think they need to go in since it seems to mske money and attract viewers. I Truely hope that the underground finds a new home so that it can continue to educate the the uneducated, and feed those who want to fill their minds with history and not just the make believe of the rich. #staywoke
06/20/17 at 12:59pm
="Gee lets cancel our best 2 shows that will make us money."=
But they will not make money. They will lose money.
It's possible that these programs were profitable at some part of the deal, but most likely, these shows were loss-leaders trying to draw eyes to the channel so that its reruns and other programming could rise with the tide. Since all of these WGNA shows, as good as they were, failed to draw in more than a million viewers per episode (on multi-million-dollar per-episode budgets), the network has changed its strategy. It sucks, but the economics make sense.
06/08/17 at 03:58pm
this network clearly has no money and should stop attempting to make shows they can't afford. I thought they were turning over a new leaf, guess I was wrong.
06/03/17 at 12:46pm
UNDERGROUND is a very good show loved by those who watch.Iam very disappointed!Maybe someone will pick it up in the fall.until then I hope you guys will seriously consider RENEWING THE UNDERGROUND SERIES
06/03/17 at 04:25am
I thought this was a very poignant show that was well done. Acting was fantastic! Cost of production for period pieces tend to run high, but when it is so well done, it seems to be worth it. I guess the network execs didn't agree. I hope it finds a new home because it is a top notch show. I do wish that networks would give shows that are being axed a chance to end them, though. Sorry to see this one go.
06/02/17 at 09:03am
I have all episodes of Underground (and Outsiders) recorded and may get around to binge someday.
A lot of people are complaining about the short lifespans of WGN shows, but honestly Salem and Manhattan both ran out of gas. Salem's 3rd season had no rudder. I don't even think I saw the last few episodes because they couldn't hold my attention.
But still, WGN's decision to completely exit from future original scripted series is disappointing. TV needs outlets for quality shows that don't get the attention of networks and bigger cable channels. Just how many more reruns of Law & Order and Last Man Standing do we need?
06/01/17 at 06:04pm
I am beginning to think when I like a program ...it is like the kiss of death for that program ... Outsiders and Underground both excellent in my opinion.
Thank goodness for PBS ... BBC ...and FX ...
06/01/17 at 04:35am
Gee lets cancel our best 2 shows that will make us money.This new CEO is either a dumbass or wants WGN to fold whichever we need to boycot WGN and all sponsors .Thats only way you stop these folks
05/31/17 at 12:47pm
Of course they did.
05/31/17 at 12:29pm
"* Hope Sinclair uses WGN as a platform for a new news channel... *"
Could be interesting. Your proposed line-up isn't for me, but I get what you're saying: talent is shaking out of Fox News, maybe now's the time to try a challenger. And otherwise, as just a repeats channel with an occasional vs-Cubs game I'd want to catch there, it's got limited use on the dial as far as I see it now that it's out of scripted shows.
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