HBO has officially announced the cancellation of one of much-talked series “The Idol”—a collaboration work by Sam Levinson and The Weeknd. Even though the series received significant attention and a strong audience response during its initial run, the network has chosen not to move forward with a second season after concluding the first season with five episodes instead of planned six-episode run.
HBO spokesperson said, “The Idol was one of HBO’s most provocative original programs, and we’re pleased by the strong audience response. After much thought and consideration, HBO, as well as the creators and producers have decided not to move forward with a second season. We’re grateful to the creators, cast, and crew for their incredible work.”
It is believed that the decision to cancel the series came after uncertainty arose among both viewers and cast members regarding the show’s future. According to Variety, Moses Sumney, one of the stars, revealed in an interview with the outlet had said that he had signed on under the impression that it was a limited series.
On the other hand, Da’Vine Joy Randolph, another star, expressed that she believed everyone was aiming for a second season, as per Variety report.
At that time, HBO took social media to respond to rumors of the show’s cancellation sated that there was no official status update.
The Idol featured The Weeknd himself alongside Lily-Rose Depp. The series had generated buzz even before its debut due to creative changes, including reports of director Amy Seimetz exiting the the project in April 2022, leading Levinson to step in.
In addition to that, a March 2023 report by Rolling Stone exposed the highlighted serious allegations about a toxic work environment on the set, which The Weeknd responded by sharing a deleted scene where his character dismissed Rolling Stone as “irrelevant”.
The show received mixed rating results as it debuted to 913,000 viewers, 17% lower than the 2019 launch of HBO’s other show Euphoria. However, the viewership figures grew to 3.6 million within the first week and eventually reached 7 million. The second episode experienced a dip in viewership, attracting only 800,000 viewers on its premiere night.
However, HBO did not disclose further viewership data throughout the series’ run.