ABC has taken a page out of CBS’ playbook with a mass renewal to some 16 scripted series.
Castle, Marvel’s Agent Carter, Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., Scandal, Grey’s Anatomy, How To Get Away With Murder, American Crime, Secrets & Lies, Black-ish, Fresh Off The Boat, Galavant, The Goldbergs, The Middle, Modern Family, Nashville and Once Upon A Time have all been picked up for the 2015-2016 season. A fifth season pick up for Last Man Standing is currently being worked out with series produced 20th Century Fox Television.
Most if not all of the above series had been expected to earn a renewal ahead of ABC’s upfront presentation in New York City next week. The only two series which were ever in doubt were The Middle and Castle, both for very similar reasons. The Middle was in murky territory as the cast’s contracts were up an co-star Charlie McDermott booked a pilot, but WBTV quietly resigned the entire cast last month.
There was a similar issue with Castle, in which both Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic’s deals were up after season seven, leaving the future of the series in doubt. Fillion inked a deal to return last month, while Katic’s reps continued talking to ABC Studios. As TVWise reported was likely, a deal is close to being finalised for her to return as a regular, with sources saying there is an “agreement in principle”. In addition, the studio and network have tapped Terence Paul Winter to replace David Amann as showrunner. Andrew Marlowe is expected to still be involved on the show to some degree.
Elsewhere, ABC has some bad news for a number of series. The network, who earlier tonight picked up nine new series for next season, officially pulled the plug on Cristela, Resurrection and Forever. None of them had been expected to return, with all three struggling in the ratings. Resurrection was the biggest let down for ABC brass after its flopped in the ratings in its second season.