The Idol, HBO’s controversial drama series co-created by R&B/pop star The Weeknd, will not return to the network for a second season.
According to Deadline, HBO decided to cancel The Idol. Many entertainment industry insiders expected that move to happen after the overwhelmingly negative reactions to the show.
The Weeknd and co-creator Sam Levinson announced The Idol to widespread fanfare. However, many critics and viewers quickly turned on the program after it debuted on the Max streaming service in June.
The Idol premiered its first two episodes at the 76th Cannes Film Festival in May. At the time, reports suggested behind-the-scenes turmoil hampered the production throughout filming.
As the controversy surrounding The Idol grew, the buzz for the series also helped generate good viewership numbers for the premiere episode. The Idol featured The Weeknd playing a nightclub owner/cult leader, while Lily-Rose Depp portrayed the titular music star.
“Can we create somebody who is trying to find themselves, using my experiences, using his experiences, using Lily’s experiences on creating something special, daring and exciting, and fun that will make people laugh and p### some people off?” The Weeknd said at the Cannes Film Festival.
Sam Levinson also stated, “We know we’re making a show that is provocative. It’s not lost on us.” The son of Oscar-winning filmmaker Barry Levinson previously worked with HBO to produce the hit series Euphoria.