NBC has officially decided on all their series from the 2014-2015 season. Mere days after pulling the plug on the ratings challenged thriller series American Odyssey, the peacock has cancelled AD: The Bible Continues as well as its companion series Beyond AD.
Biblical drama AD: The Bible Continues has not been as big of a ratings disaster as American Odyssey, but it was nevertheless a huge let down for NBC. Hailing from Roma Downey and Mark Burnett, the 10 episode series is a follow up to mega ratings hit The Bible. When NBC pre-emptively bought the show back in 2013, they were hoping for ratings similar to those for The Bible, which frequently drew in more than 10 million viewers for History. While AD started off well for NBC, it faded fast, losing more than half of its audience in live+same day by the season finale.
That being said, it’s worth noting that NBC brass had kept the series in contention for a second season pick up, which both Burnett and Downey were said to be developing. But in a similar situation to bubble series Constantine, which hailed from Warner Bros Television, they decided that development was strong enough to go with new series rather than ordering second seasons. In both cases the fact that NBCUniversal did not see back-end from VOD and international sales was also a factor (AD is distributed globally by MGM).