DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – A television crime drama that took its name from and made its home in the Motor City has been cancelled, one of its producers said Friday.
“Detroit 1-8-7” Executive Producer David Zabel confirmed to The Associated Press the news of the cancellation, which had been suspected in the weeks since the show’s Detroit-based production wrapped this winter.
Also confirming the show’s cancellation was series regular Erin Cummings, who tweeted Friday: “To clarify: yes, it’s official. Detroit 187 has been cancelled. Thank you for the support.”
ABC had no comment Friday. The network will officially unveil its fall schedule on Tuesday.
Zabel and other producers repeatedly made the case to renew the show, most recently meeting with ABC executives this month to discuss ideas for a second season.
ABC Entertainment Group President Paul Lee told the Television Critics Association in January that “Detroit 1-8-7” was among a few shows for which ratings, not quality, was an issue.
Zabel told the AP in March that he hoped ABC would have “the integrity and courage to stick by a show they know is good,” but added that he hoped the studio would be “diligent and crafty enough to find a way to allow us to continue on elsewhere.”
Zabel said “1-8-7” would do well on a cable network, citing “Southland,” which is thriving on TNT after being cut by NBC.
Still, such a move would be a longshot. He said Friday that the “finances don’t make sense especially with things the way they are in Michigan,” referring to the state governor’s proposal to change a program that offered some of the most generous film tax credits in the nation.
Cummings echoed that notion, saying she can’t help but think that cutbacks in the Michigan film incentives had a role in the cancelling of the Detroit based crime drama.
Gov. Rick Snyder proposed a limit of $25 million a year on incentives as part of his budget-savings plan, and the state’s current incentive program for filmmakers is not capped.
“There are things that are still being explored,” Zabel said. “But we’re almost at the end of the road in terms of options.”
“Detroit 1-8-7” was filmed in and around Detroit, and its soundstage was in the city’s enclave of Highland Park, which closed its doors in April. It starred Michael Imperioli and James McDaniel.
“My attitude is we spent a year making a good show and having a really cool experience in Detroit,” Zabel said. “I wish it could go on longer.”
There is no doubt fans of the crime drama will be disappointed to hear of the show’s cancellation, many of them noting they not only fell in love with the show for its depiction of Detroit, but for the captive story lines and dynamic cast.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)