Last week came the news that sci-fi series “Dark Matter” had been cancelled by Syfy after three seasons, despite ending on a cliffhanger.
In a new posting on his blog, series creator Joseph Mallozzi has written to the fans of the show saying the actual cause of the cancellation comes down to money and rights:
“Working against us was the fact that we weren’t a SyFy original. We were an acquisition. For those not in the know, an original is a series that is developed by the network and, more importantly, owned by the network, allowing them to monetize the show through things like international sales, streaming, etc. The network pays a lot more but presumably reaps the benefits down the line.”
Networks, both regular and cable, have been pushing very hard in recent years to develop their shows ‘in house’ rather than acquire them from outside production companies so as to take advantage of revenue from licensing to streaming services or releasing them on their own.
Mallozzi says that while ratings had fallen a bit since the second season, it was by under 10% as opposed to the industry average of a 25% drop off from season to season. With delayed viewing figures, the series was also one of Syfy’s most watched shows in 2017.
Sadly his five-year plan for the show will not come to fruition, and he says the network wouldn’t consider a pitch for a six-episode final season to wrap up the third season cliffhanger. Mallozzi is currently trying to see if another network would be willing to step in and save the show.
The third and apparent final season will be hitting Netlix on September 25th.