The news is not unexpected. As we noted in our story yesterday on Fox’s decision to pick up four new drama series, with a fifth pending, the move did not bode well for the network’s bubble dramas Star, Lethal Weapon and The Passage, all of which were canceled today.
The Warner Bros. TV-produced Lethal Weapon had been through the wringer since the firing of Clayne Crawford last spring over issues with on-set behavior. The show landed a last-minute Season 3 renewal after finding a new co-lead in Seann William Scott who was received fairly well by fans. Then last fall, star Damon Wayans dropped the bomb that he was going to leave after the first 13 episodes of Season 3. He later signed off for three more episodes and was reportedly open to another season.
The season finale ended with a cliffhanger and left the door open for the possibility of a season 4. During TCA in February Fox Entertainment chairman Charlie Collier indicated that the reboot still had some life in it. He was complimentary of Lethal Weapon‘s performance and hinted that any production issues with Wayans may have been resolved, stating repeatedly that everyone is “working in lockstep.” Also in February, Lethal Weapon creator/executive producer Matt Miller was hopeful for a season 4 and said that he had big plans — and they included Wayans staying put.
The season 3 finale saw a dip in ratings but still delivered respectable 1.2 adults 18-49 rating and 5.4 million viewers in Live+7.
In the end, it was not the ratings performance but the seemingly never-ending behind-the-scene drama that sealed the show’s fate.