Last week, news broke that the sixth season of Showtime’s adaptation of Shameless – which originally aired state-side in early 2016 – would be launching on this side of the pond on Netflix UK on Friday September 1st. That inevitably led some to question whether or not More4 had lost the rights to the show.
I’ve learned that Channel 4’s digi-net does still hold the rights to the American adaptation of their award winning series, but have not scheduled the fifth or sixth seasons. They hold the rights to these seasons under a long-term agreement with international distributor Warner Bros. International Television Distribution.
Despite them still holding rights to the show, it is not immediately clear when (or even if) More4 will place newer episodes of Shameless on the schedule. This is not the first time Netflix UK has launched a new season, after they brought season five to the UK late last year. It’s important to note that the series has never been a huge ratings player for More4 and after season three’s lackluster ratings performance, it was moved to an early morning slot (1am) for season four.
Shameless follows the daily lives of the members of the blue collar Gallagher family who live in the South Side of Chicago. The working class family struggles to make ends meet while Frank, the patriach of the Gallagher clan, can usually be found at the local bar spending what little money they have. The drama series stars William H. Macy, Emmy Rossum, Justin Chatwin, Jeremy Allen White, Ethan Cutkosky, Shanola Hampton, Steve Howey, Emma Kenney, and Cameron Monagha
The show’s 12 episode sixth season picks up a few months after the season five finale, as the Gallaghers prepare for yet another long Chicago winter. This season will see more than just the arctic Lake Michigan winds whipping through the Southside. Change is hard and the Gallaghers are as surprised as anyone at how life is turning out for them. But the question remains, as they come into their own and find out who they are, is it really possible that the Gallaghers could grow apart for good?
Shameless is based on the UK drama of the same name and was developed for television by ER and The West Wing veteran producer John Wells. The executive producers are John Wells, Andrew Stearn, Christopher Chulack, Davey Holmes, Nancy M. Pimental and Krista Vernoff; while original series creator Paul Abbott serves as executive consultant. The drama series is produced by Bonanza Productions Inc., in association with John Wells Productions and Warner Bros. Television. Showtime has ordered an eighth season, which premieres state-side in November.