Earlier this year it seemed that the fan campaign to save NBC’s cancelled historical time travel drama “Timeless” was a success.
Despite very good reviews and a strong fanbase, the network cut the series due to low ratings and an overcrowded schedule. Then, in a last minute decision, seemed to change their mind and renewed it.
Speaking at an executive session with the Television Critics Association this week, NBC Entertainment Chairman Robert Greenblatt says it wasn’t the fan outcry that caused the network to change its decision, though it did help in a small way:
“What I say to the fans when they come out in droves when we cancel a show is ‘Where were you when we had the show on the air in helping us build this into a huge ratings success?’. The outcry from fans, I don’t know how many there really were. Like all things on social media, it’s a lot smaller than you think. But we’re happy to know they cared and love the show. We love the show.”
NBC Entertainment President Jennifer Salke adds that “Timeless” was a regretful cancellation and what the fan support did do is give faith to NBC to stick with a series they thought could be a winner:
“We loved the show. There were some financial challenges with the show. There were ratings challenges with the show. To be able to have a fan base that’s so engaged in the show just kept bombarding us with feelings that we had about the show, I like to say it was a collaborative passion swell that made us open it up and look at it again. Could we figure out a way to make this make sense? I’m so glad that we did. Genre fans get very excited and noisy about things. I love that. That’s why we love to program for them. It was a good story.”
The series has shifted its shooting locale from Vancouver to Los Angeles and scored close to $10 million in tax credits. As a result, the ten episode second season will be able to maintain the same budget per episode as the first season.
“Timeless” will be back midseason in 2018.