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‘Vinyl’ Canceled: HBO Scraps Plans For Revamped Season 2

HBO has changed course on VinylThe 1970s rock n roll drama had been renewed for a second season with a new showrunner, Scott Z. Burns, replacing co-creator, executive producer and showrunner Terence Winter. Now the premium cable network has decided not to go with Season 2 of the series, executive produced by Martin Scorsese and Mick Jagger.

“After careful consideration, we have decided not to proceed with a second season of Vinyl,” HBO said in a statement. “Obviously, this was not an easy decision. We have enormous respect for the creative team and cast for their hard work and passion on this project.

Cancellation wHBO blue logoas not based on the work of the new Vinyl creative team of Burns and executive producer Max Borenstein as no scripts for Season 2 had been delivered.

Vinyl has been a disappointment, a big-budget series from A-list auspices and a star cast that had underperformed. “Vinyl didn’t launch in the way we were hoping it would; it’s disappointing, but it happens,” HBO’s outgoing head of programming Michael Lombardo told Deadline last month.

The decision not to continue with Vinyl comes as HBO’s new programming chief Casey Bloys is settling into the job. It will free up resources and help him put his stamp on HBO’s drama output more quickly.


Vinyl had a 20-year development history, with Scorsese and Jagger originally attempting to do it as a movie. When it was set up at HBO in 2010, Winter was brought in as a writer/executive producer.

The big-budget period drama drew soft ratings for its first season, with viewership between 760,000 and 570,000 for a premiere airing.

The series starred Bobby Cannavale as Richie Finestra, a record label president who is trying to save his company and his soul without destroying everyone in his path. Co-starring were Olivia Wilde, Ray Romano, Ato Essandoh, Max Casella, P.J. Byrne, J.C. MacKenzie, Birgitte Hjort Sørensen, Juno Temple, Jack Quaid, James Jagger and Paul Ben-Victor.

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  1. anonymouson Jun 22, 2016 10:33 am

    not a great show- but as it got to the end it finally started to get interesting

    • pirate7xon Jun 22, 2016 3:50 pm


  2. Vinyl#1Fanon Jun 22, 2016 10:34 am

    Every episode was like the Beatles scene from Walk Hard but played straight.

  3. ZigZagon Jun 22, 2016 10:37 am

    I liked Vinyl, but it took 4 or 5 episodes to get into it. The pilot was really slow and full of 70’s rock n’ roll clichés. Good idea, but the execution could have been better.

    • Todd Loseyon Jun 22, 2016 2:07 pm

      Exactly! So, cliche I didn’t make it past the 20 minute mark.

      • Sissy Napolitanoon Jun 23, 2016 11:25 am

        ,me either

  4. UncleBUCKEDon Jun 22, 2016 10:38 am

    Wow… so much for all that star power.

    But when it’s not on the page…

  5. Fanny Winkleon Jun 22, 2016 10:43 am

    I will miss all the zoom in cocaine shots. But that’s about it…

    • on Jun 23, 2016 12:21 pm

      Those cokes scenes made me laugh … Feel the burn

  6. Dariaon Jun 22, 2016 10:46 am

    Yeah. So many great actors on it, but not a good show. The positive: a lot of amazing talent available for other shows!

    • on Jun 27, 2016 8:11 pm

      Was sorry to hear the news. We really enjoyed the show and the accuracy. Acting was superb. Hoping it’s retooled in the future and is picked up again.

      • Angelaon Jul 11, 2016 3:56 pm

        I think they jumped the gun, cancelling this series like they did. Second season could have been better. There were storylines that had some “long legs” to them, given half a chance. I was really looking forward to seeing what happens with Nasty Bits, Devon and Richie, and I totally LOVED Andrea Zito’s character. Just so many possibilities there. Believe me when I say I have been inconsolable since news of dropping a show that I was addicted to!!!

        • on Jul 19, 2016 9:26 pm

          I agree Angela! I’m so angry to only find this out now 😭 I watched the entire season in 2 sittings

          • on Jul 20, 2016 7:56 am

            Me too, what a bummer. Was just speaking of the show, looked it up and boom. . . Cancelled.

  7. sammynyc11on Jun 22, 2016 10:51 am

    Scott Burns was someone who really could have made a difference.
    There’s a reason people refer to HBO now as HUGE BROKEN OBJECT.

    • Mr. Majestykon Jun 22, 2016 2:12 pm

      Dude, no one’s referring to HBO as “Huge Broken Object.”

    • Andrew Davidon Jun 23, 2016 6:53 am

      Nobody who thinks “HUGE BROKEN OBJECT” is clever has any standing to mock HBO’s programming.

    • Storyon Jun 23, 2016 12:46 pm

      Because they don’t have an analytics team advising creative decisions, building statistical blueprints to entertainment success?

      Can we get another Will Arnette show, please? The algorithms are reading off the charts!

  8. Jacksonon Jun 22, 2016 10:57 am

    I thought this series was a fresh look at the 70’s. Growing up in that period, we were often shielded from what really went on behind the scenes of the record companies. Everything was rumor then and seeing this filled in a lot of the blanks. Many thanks to Mick and Martin and cast. ;)

    • on Jun 22, 2016 1:56 pm


    • Joseph Donatoon Jun 22, 2016 7:59 pm

      i agree with you. i guess one would have had to grow up in that era and been there and done that to fully appreciate what they were trying to convey. i thought it was a great show. but dont worry they got WESTWORLD in the works again.??more fictional crap!! i guess that appeals to the masses.

      • Davroson Jun 23, 2016 12:08 am

        And this wasn’t (fictional crap)?

    • on Jun 23, 2016 6:25 am

      I thought he gave a real take on what the musicians went through.

      • on Jul 13, 2016 2:56 pm

        This wasn’t about the musicians, but the record industry. The A&R game, promotions,distribution and recording. Deals,Sex, drugs, & rock & roll. The stories inside the stories were sometime pointless set ups to the following scenes which made this long winded.

        • Bobon Jul 20, 2016 5:24 am

          Agreed. The whole thread of the lead character’s wife was a bore-fest. A Warhol factory girl who is bored with her new life as housefrau. Who cares? The lead’s buddy being killed in a car accident years back–another dead end.(no pun intended).

    • ronsonaron Jun 23, 2016 8:33 am

      bring Open City back to the table, please. that pilot was exceptional.

    • on Jun 23, 2016 3:53 pm

      Agreed, was looking forward to Season 2!

  9. Matchboxon Jun 22, 2016 10:59 am

    Well, the pipeline for half-hour comedy still looks strong at HBO but drama — yikes. Two more (short) seasons of GoT, one more season of (low-rated) The Leftovers, plus new series Westworld. Are there any other new dramas in production at HBO? Anything aimed at adult audiences that aren’t into sci-fi or fantasy?

    • Jingleon Jun 22, 2016 12:00 pm


      Has there ever been a show that popular and acclaimed that just went off the air without a proper final season? It was maddening.

      Giving it a 6-12 episode sendoff would be befitting of such a stellar show, and would provide a Band Aid for HBO and their drama department.

      Now, to get all those actors signed…

      • JBon Jun 22, 2016 12:20 pm

        This. I was SO ticked off when they cancelled Deadwood. I really think they have their heads up their arses as there is so much support for this show. Really makes me smh.

        • ordepon Jun 22, 2016 12:44 pm

          Hopefully Bloys doesn’t cancel the movie, Milch is working on Shadow Country adaptation with Jeff Bridges. Also we’re getting a 70’s Porn series from The Wire’s David Simon and Sharp Objects series with Amy Adams as well. One of HBO’s biggest mistakes was passing on American Gods, looks like it might bring in a hell of alot of viewers for Starz, a channel now getting attraction due to Outlander and Ash vs. Evil Dead.

          • Matchboxon Jun 22, 2016 1:01 pm

            Forgot about the porn series (gross) and Sharp Objects, which does sound promising. American Gods will be a fit at Starz, which seems to be emerging as the premium net for the ComiCon crowd.

          • pirate7xon Jun 22, 2016 3:54 pm

            Power and Black Sails are what’s keeping Starz shining. Pretty much tentpole TV for the channel.

    • billyon Jun 22, 2016 2:00 pm

      the limited series “the night of” has been getting great reviews and starts next month

  10. Johnon Jun 22, 2016 11:03 am

    It’s hard to get attached to a series full of unlikable characters. Hollywood take note.

    • Jared Munsonon Jun 22, 2016 11:45 am

      You’ve heard of Breaking Bad right?

      • charlieworkon Jun 22, 2016 12:08 pm

        Antihero ≠ unlikable.

      • Jack Pattersonon Jun 22, 2016 12:16 pm

        BB had likable characters. As my grandma was fond of saying, love the sinner hate the sin. You didn’t have to like what the characters on breaking bad did, but you could still like the characters. That’s what make anti-heroes like Walter White so compelling.

        • on Jun 22, 2016 8:17 pm

          Who was the likable character on Breaking Bad?

          • Phenon Jun 22, 2016 11:26 pm


        • Umm...on Jun 22, 2016 9:43 pm

          Compelling is not the same as likable.

  11. DDon Jun 22, 2016 11:03 am

    The pilot was close to an embarrassment but it got increasingly better and Bobby C was great. Viewership lower than HBO may have liked, but these fans were really loyal. Let’s light the incense hoping Netflix steps in…

    • on Jun 22, 2016 12:26 pm

      Netflix cannot step in and ‘save’ every dud TV series just because a small number like it. TV shows end.

    • Angelaon Jul 12, 2016 9:02 am

      Wouldn’t that be awesome!? “House of Cards”and “Orange is the New Black”, and others , are doing just great with Netflix. If only they could/would pick up Vinyl. I just know, in my heart, that Vinyl could really nail it if, given another chance.

  12. on Jun 22, 2016 11:06 am

    Sampled the first episode. Awful. Never made it to the second.

  13. Big Pu$$yon Jun 22, 2016 11:24 am

    This might be a milestone in the end of the new golden age of television – movie biz starf*ckers led to the same decisions and decision makers that have virtually killed the movies – and the great things about television – respect for writers, new faces, original visions – were slowly washed away. Now, the new streamers, Hulu, for example, is already treating writers and creators like shit. Moronic execs, former secretaries, are ‘testing’ to get leverage to import their mediocrity.
    Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.

    • billon Jun 22, 2016 7:24 pm

      I agree with this actually. This was a show green lighted purely because of the names involved. That idiocy is what slaughtered the movie industry, and it’s why TV has been eating their lunch.

    • JEFF naton Jun 26, 2016 10:21 pm

      Big you nailed it completely. Remember the early mid 90s Pulp Fiction, Slingblade, Natural Born Killers, Fargo, etc. blowing us away. The movies hit a peak, then, the dollars win, all Marvel bullshit, crap rom-coms dime a dozen SNL players skit crap. Here we are with TV now. The peak is washing away. HBO you pussies. Goodbye good tv. WATCH MR ROBOT. The last of the greats,…

  14. turnitupon Jun 22, 2016 11:26 am

    Felt like a show that had nothing going for it, so they just crammed in excessive drug use, sex, language and lots of 70s “ring the bell” references. And even then it managed to still be totally boring.

  15. BRealon Jun 22, 2016 11:27 am

    Wah. Was fun to watch, regardless of it’s imperfections. I’ll miss it.

  16. No Surpriseon Jun 22, 2016 11:29 am

    Bobby Canavale chewed up every scene.Ray Romano was very
    good but the rest “meh”.The millennials don’t care and the oldsters
    for the most part have lived or been exposed to this life.
    Can you say quaalude? I know Bill Cosby can.

  17. TJon Jun 22, 2016 11:29 am

    I had really high hopes for this, but personally I couldn’t finish the second episode.

  18. on Jun 22, 2016 11:31 am

    I guess I’ll delete the first season DVDs from my Netflix queue. Waste of time getting into a show if it’s not going to continue.

    • chacal (@chacal_lachaise)on Jun 22, 2016 5:15 pm

      Felt bad at first because we had cancelled HBO just before it began. And actually, it would have been the only show I would have watched on that channel. Guess I will wash it from my brain.

  19. david davidon Jun 22, 2016 11:43 am

    The only surprise here is that HBO didn’t announce this on a Friday-night, when the industry is pretty much shut down. Too bad as it did have some great performances from Cannavale, Wilde, Romano, Funaro, Chris Jagger and Armen Garo.
    I predicted this when Winter was shown the door. Sad!

  20. HAPon Jun 22, 2016 11:45 am

    The operative phrase here is big-budget.

  21. on Jun 22, 2016 11:46 am

    I wish there was a broken heart emoticon. Oh wait there is ….💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔

    • vinyl fanon Jun 23, 2016 8:56 am

      I agree

  22. on Jun 22, 2016 11:49 am

    People won’t sympathize to spoiled characters.

  23. Anonymouson Jun 22, 2016 11:52 am

    the problem was that Bobby is a great supporting actor but he just couldn’t pull off the lead role here. he tried hard, but he didn’t resonate and his gallant effort ultimately made it less real. Romano was terrific – should have switched characters. Duchovny would have been great out front. But not a lead role for just anyone – a tough one to make work.

    • on Jul 19, 2016 9:31 pm

      To be honest I thought Ray was rather dull and it was Richie keeping him afloat

  24. on Jun 22, 2016 11:55 am

    Too relentlessly dark without any redeeming qualities to offset that.

    • Janeon Jun 22, 2016 5:20 pm

      This. Tony Soprano had likability, despite the awful parts of him. There were none here.

  25. Sean Kenedyon Jun 22, 2016 12:21 pm

    Beautiful decision, Casey Bloys! I’m a fervent HBO fan and respect the quality of their show. However, Vinyl is the worst show that HBO has ever been a part of!! Bobby Cannavale’s over acting is repugnant, unsympathetic and his constant over the top snorting cocaine is repugnant. The tasteless narrative of the show is shocking that a fine talented writer like, Terence Winter including a talented Martin Scorsese would be a part of the writing and direction of the show. There was never one scintilla of any character with a redeeming quality in the show. It was never t about the music business, Vinyl was about an insane asylum within the record business. Vinyl was an insult to the successful great talented record executives and producers such as the David Geffen’s, Mo Austin’s etc. Casey Bloys’ hard nose business decision in not picking it up Vinyl for another season is the obvious reason why HBO hired Casey, he did it so irrespective of HBO’s possible expunging future business relationships with those individuals involved in the production, writing and directing of this miscarriage attempt of a horrible. Welcome to the creative side of HBO, Casey !

    • Dave Bingon Jun 22, 2016 2:05 pm

      Have you worked in the music industry?

      • KelceeVinylFanon Jun 23, 2016 6:51 am

        I have and it was during that Era. I would go so far aas to say that Sean Kennedy did not.

    • on Jun 26, 2016 7:34 pm

      Personally I thought it wa s a great show and am disappointed there will be no season two. Don’t you all think there was no previous real life experience via Mick and Martin?? Really?

    • on Jul 19, 2016 9:24 pm

      Sean he’s playing the character of a real person that was his daily struggle. Just because your view on drugs is negative does not take anything away from the show it gives an incite to temptations and struggles of that world

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