EXCLUSIVE: Netflix has opted not to move forward with a second season of Archive 81, Deadline has learned. The news comes two months after the Jan. 14 debut of the horror drama starring Mamoudou Athie and Dina Shihabi.
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The cancellation is somewhat surprising because Archive 81 did break into Nielsen and Netflix’s weekly Top 10 ratings for originals, and it also briefly shot to No. 1 on Netflix in the U.S. before being dethroned by the return of Ozark. With the streamer laser-focused on analyzing viewing versus cost in its renewal decisions, the number of eyeballs Archive 81 drew possibly did not meet the threshold Netflix had set for the series based on its budget.
Archive 81, based on the supernatural horror podcast and produced by James Wan’s Atomic Monster, was written and executive produced by Rebecca Sonnenshine, who made her debut as a showrunner on the series.
In Archive 81, when archivist Dan Turner (Athie) takes a mysterious job restoring a collection of damaged videotapes from 1994, he finds himself reconstructing the work of documentary filmmaker Melody Pendras (Shihabi) and her investigation into a dangerous cult. As Dan is drawn into Melody’s story, he becomes convinced he can save her from the terrifying end she met 25 years ago.
This marked Athie’s third Netflix project, following Uncorked and The Getdown. He next will be seen in the tentpole feature Jurassic World Dominion. Meanwhile, Shihabi’s next project is with Netflix, as a series regular on the upcoming Painkiller.
Stranger Things director Rebecca Thomas helmed half the series and executive produced the series with Sonnenshine. Paul Harris Boardman served as writer and executive producer. Wan and Michael Clear served as executive producers for Atomic Monster. Rob Hackett was a co-executive producer.
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