UPN Cancels 'Special Unit 2'

By Lisa
January 20, 2002 - 7:32 PM

Enterprise lead out show Special Unit 2 has been cancelled by UPN, despite the network already having picked up the series for a full season.

Series creator and executive producer Evan Katz made the announcment on the SU2 Yahoo! Club, citing changes in UPN's management at the reason for the cancellation.

"I could give you a lot of frustrating details, but the bottom line is the new management of UPN feels differently about the show than the old management. Our back order of nine episodes has been rescinded," Katz wrote.

UPN has been undergoing some backroom restructuring recently, with the decision by parent company Viacom to merge UPN with its CBS Television Unit. Both networks now report to one chief executive - CBS's Leslie Moonves. UPN's former president Dean Valentine and President of Television Programming at Paramount Kerry McCluggage have both recently parted company with the network.

Special Unit 2 premiered in April last year, brought in as a mid-season replacement for the now-defunct Seven Days. Although the series only scored average ratings, it was renewed for a second season as the lead-out show for Enterprise. But airing after one of UPN's most popular shows has meant its audience retention figures are miserable; only 58.75% of people keep watching past the Trek show.

More information can be found in the original report at the Futon Critic.

Meanwhile as production on one show ends, the future of another UPN series looks secure - at least until the end of the season.

Roswell, the show that jumped networks from the WB with its lead-in show Buffy the Vampire Slayer, has been given the go-ahead to complete its first full run on UPN.

"They picked up another seven, so we're doing 20 episodes this year, a total of 20," executive producer Jason Katims said in an interview at UPN's winter press tour (Via Sci Fi wire). "Which is good. We're shooting now the 14th episode. We're more than halfway into shooting."

When the network picked up the series from the WB, it ordered a full 22 episode season for the series, but with the option of cutting that back to only 13. In December, then UPN chief executive Dean Valentine stressed the network was exploring a number of options for the series (story). Katims has now confirmed that she show has a 20 episode comitment on UPN.

As for whether the show will be back for another year, he was still uncertain. "For next year, we're essentially where we always are around this time of year, which is we don't know. This is where we were the first season and the second season, which is we're kind of at this point not sure about whether the show is going to come back."

More from Jason Katims, including some spoilers for forthcoming episodes can be found here at the Sci Fi Wire.

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