Appearing at the Television Critics Association press tour to talk about The CW’s present, Dawn Ostroff was asked about two high-profile nascent shows without a future.
The “Gossip Girl” spinoff set in the ’80s at least had a past, airing as a backdoor pilot in the home-stretch of the show’s second season. While some viewers thought the different setting offered new insights into the character of the future Lily van der Woodsen (Kelly Rutherford on “Gossip Girl,” Brittany Snow in the spinoff), The CW didn’t add the spinoff to its fall schedule. At upfronts, though, Ostroff indicated to reporters that it may still be in the running for a midseason berth.
On Tuesday (Aug. 4), she sounded less enthusiastic.
“Not right now,” Ostroff said. “It doesn’t look like it’s likely.”
That’s actually still more hope than “Body Politic” well-wishers have. The Washington-set drama became a cause celebre for a number of high profile online voices who read the script or saw the pilot. It also acquired a sight-unseen cult following from fans of the cast, which included Jason Dohring, Minka Kelly, Brian Austin Green, Gabrielle Union, Jenny Wade and Jay Hernandez.
“It’s dead,” Ostroff said of “Body Politic” on Tuesday. “I’ve been doing this for a long time, and I’ve never been in a situation where literally every pilot we shot this year could have made it on the schedule. They were just great pilots. We had a really difficult time deciding what was going to fit on the network. It was almost like a Sophie’s Choice. As much as we all loved Body Politic, it just didn’t – we just didn’t go with it. And I think the show hasn’t been seen really by anybody because it was just a pilot, but the actors, the producers, the writers – they did a really good job.
So those are two dead shows that never really aired. One show that isn’t as dead as some pundits have made it out to be, though, is “Smallville.” The long-running proto-Superman story was shuffled off to Friday nights in a move many reporters considered to be a precursor to inevitable cancellation.
Not so fast, Ostroff says.
“I hope it’s not the last season,” Ostroff teased. “I think the producers have done a great job coming up with really good storylines this year. Zod is going to be the big villain and Clark has got to save the world, so we’re all going to be kneeling to Zod. But I do think that the show still has a lot of life left in it. The cast is very excited, as are the producers, so we have high hopes for it staying on the air for a while.”
Critics also asked about the future of “Supernatural,” which didn’t seem quite as precarious as the fate of “Smallville.”
“Well, we hope ‘Supernatural’ will go on,” Ostroff said. “I mean Eric Kripke’s done a great job with the show creatively. The show has gotten stronger every year. The cast is wonderful, so we’re hopeful that it will stay on the air for a long time.”