Starz Cancels ‘Boss’; Two-Hour Finale Still A Possibility

Published 2 years ago by

Kelsey Grammer in Boss Starz Starz Cancels Boss; Two Hour Finale Still A Possibility

The great machine that is the Chicago political arena will no longer be part of the Starz line-up, as it was announced by the pay-cable network that the Kelsey Grammer-led drama, Boss, has been canceled following two seasons of less-than-stellar ratings.

Unfortunately, the series had low ratings from the start, garnering just 659,000 total viewers for its initial premiere in 2011. Despite the additions of familiar faces such as Sanaa Lathan (AVP, Contagion), rapper-turned actor T.I. and Glee alum Jonathan Groff, season 2 saw those numbers drop even further with only 317,000 tuning in for the August premiere. In the end, the series saw a season high of 440,000 viewers, which is a far cry from the 1.25 million viewers who tuned in during the first season of Starz’ period drama, Magic City.

Normally, when a series is met with such low numbers, awards and accolades can often help stave off cancellation. For its part, Boss managed to nab a Golden Globe nomination for best drama series, while Grammer picked up the award for best actor. The show failed to garner any award recognition outside of the Golden Globes – a fact that likely guided Starz toward its decision to cancel.

The network released a statement discussing the cancellation of the series, which said:

“After much deliberation, we have made the difficult decision to not proceed with [a third season of] Boss. We remain proud of this award-winning show, its exceptional cast and writers, and are grateful to Kelsey Grammer, [creator] Farhad Safinia and our partners at Lionsgate TV.”

Naturally, this news leaves Boss’ admittedly small, but devoted fanbase without a true sense of closure following the end of season 2. The finale, which aired in October, saw Mayor Tom Kane (Grammer) once more regain control of Chicago, while managing to keep the secret of his dementia under wraps. While that served as a somewhat divisive (and familiar) ending to the season, it did little to address the overall plotline, not to mention the myriad subplots that have sprung up during the series’ 18-episode run – a fact which has the producers talking about the possibility of a two-hour movie that would offer a more concrete conclusion to the rise and fall of Mayor Tom Kane.

Kathleen Robertson and Kelsey Grammer in Boss True Enough Starz Cancels Boss; Two Hour Finale Still A Possibility

While many fans would undoubtedly enjoy seeing the series come to a proper and conclusive end, such an endeavor would involve considerable effort as new deals would have to be struck with the cast and creators – many of whom, like Grammer, have already moved on to other projects. The situation is reminiscent of HBO’s sudden dismissal of Deadwood in 2006, which led fans to cling to the rumor of a television movie/finale that never came to fruition.

To some extent, Boss was always the odd man out at Starz. And while it did its best to throw in certain elements that were more in tune with the rest of the network’s programming, the dark, Shakespearean-influenced drama may not have fit in with what Starz president Chris Albrecht described as the network’s intent to deliver “premium TV-flavored popcorn” or television dramas with a far-reaching, international appeal like its flagship drama, Spartacus.

As many are likely aware, Spartacus will be ending its run beginning this January with Spartacus: War of the Damned. And with Boss ending, that leaves Magic City as the network’s sole returning series. This fact paves the way for upcoming programs such as Da Vinci’s Demons from Batman Begins and Man of Steel scribe David Goyer and Black Sails, the Treasure Island prequel from executive producer Michael Bay. Continuing with its approach to reaching the widest audience possible, Starz is also currently working on the sci-fi action series Incursion, from Spartacus creator Stephen S. DeKnight, and Vlad Dracula, which will be developed by comics and Babylon 5 scribe J. Michael Straczynski.


Screen Rant will update you with any news regarding a possible Boss television movie as it is made available.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

TAGS: Boss
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  1. Treason…. Treason!!!

    • @Loise, you make $27h…good for you! I make up to $85h working from home. My story is that I quit working at shoprite to work online and with a little effort I easily bring in around $45h to $85h…heres a good example of what i’m doing..Mel7.CoMJUST

  2. That really stinks. Such a good show (top 5), and a real shame more people didn’t tune in. Whenever I tried to tell people about it, they could only think of their dislike for Grammer. C’mon Netflix, save this amazing show!

  3. Really enjoyed it. Stayed with it from episode one and turned a few people towards it. But so be it. It was never going to be around for the long term and a final TV movie to wrap it all up will be a nice nod towards those who did tune in and enjoy it.

  4. As always,good things come to an end ! Early end !:(

  5. A lot of my actor friends in Chicago are going to be crushed. It seems most of the dramatic tv shows filmed in the Windy City tend to be short-lived. Makes you wonder if behind the scenes politics and real Chicago politicians and unions are making it near impossible to accomplish things on-camera.

    • interesting theory Darren . personally I also loved Chicago Code which didn’t make the cut

  6. Kelsey just can’t catch a break on tv unless he Frasier or Sideshow Bob.

  7. A shame.I hope they can give it a proper endings.

  8. Boss Canceled! Best script, acting, story, direction, best of the best on – forget about cable – best of the best on television. This is stupidity personified on all levels. Typical pubic mentality – lets make sure Honey Boo Boo gets renewed. Yeah!

    • I agree with your assessment, Gussy. I generally didn’t like Grammar as Frasier or on Cheers, for that matter, but Mayor Tom Kane is Grammer’s best and most authentic role to date. The rest of the actors give stellar performances as well. I used the term “stupidity” in my facebook reaction to the cancellation of BOSS, too. It’s just plain wrong-thinking on the part of going by “the numbers” in deciding what stays and what goes. Sometimes it takes a few years for word to get out about a stellar show. For instance, I didn’t pick up on JUSTIFIED until the 2nd season. It’s one of my favorite TV shows. It’s no wonder so many TV shows fail when there’s such a knee-jerk reaction to cancel shows before they have a chance to catch on. Same thing with the best-ever TV series of late, 24, which I came to know about in its Season 2. There’s so many bloody tv shows that it’s a wonder ANY show has more than a thousand viewers at any given time. I’m so sick to death of reality shows which are cheaper to produce, but I always feel like I need a shower after watching one. So, yeah, there’s a lot of stupid people out there watching crap and whenever there’s a great show that emerges, it’s cancelled before it catches on to a greater audience. It’s frustrating to be sure.

      • COMMONTATOR.You save me some typing I agree with everything you said including how awesome justified is. these network just don’t want to give anything a chance. boss, when I heard about it was not something I said, hey I just have to see this . but when I got around to checking it out I watched the whole first season in one night. what a fantastic show it turn out to be. i’d say one of the top 10 shows ive ever watched. given a little longer I think it would have caught on.

  9. While the acting chops of many of the players on Boss cannot be denied, I believe that the reason for the demise of this show is its complete lack of anything or anyone to root for. Humans ultimately want to be intertained. From the beginning this story was deeply cynical and as far as I can tell there is not a character one that has any redeeming values. In my opinion a story with no protagonist is ultimatelly doomed.

  10. @Sean Kirk I dont think that’s true at all, i think most people loved seeing Kelsey work, i loved him on both this and on Frasier/Cheers. He constantly surprised you, despite how despicable he was at times, how low, and ridiculous he would go to accomplish his goals, which was a hard feat after so many times, but they kept doing it. I think this show IMO got canceled, for a couple reasons, mostly b/c people didn’t know about it for one, secondly while the show was great, i always felt like some of its writing (which btw the weekly reviewer of the show on this very site generally said these things) would hold it back from being the best, it was always like great, but i think with better writing it could of been epic, and one of the best shows ever frankly, especially with it’s cast.

  11. I was a dedicated fan of Boss.i never missed an episode .i think they need to wrap it up with a final finale. I told my husband if they don’t we’re canceling starz.Boss was my main reason for not canceling Starz……..Kelsey Grammer played the perfect part,and I’m sad to see this cancelled because he was great in this show……..

  12. I’m really sad … I want to see more of “Boss”. I think there are several shows out there (rated support or not) that should be cancelled but this is not one of them.

  13. Did not have stars but bought season one and two from iTunes. Excellent show all around. Needs a 2-3 hour movie to wrap it up. Was not going to be a series that lasted more than 3-4 seasons at a maximum. The producers and writers should close the gape and give the show a proper ending so it is complte and people will buy or rent one of the best tv shows made in a long time.

  14. A brilliant series and brilliant cast. There may not have been enough fans for the network, but there were enough avid fans such as myself who should be respected. Please give Boss its proper due and give us a wrap up show. So sad to see it go. Kelsey G. was simply brilliant.

  15. Cant believe they will us so high and dry. Excellent story line.

  16. I like so many others did not start to watch Boss until the end of the second season. WOW !!! what a series right up to the end. I agree with most of the comment about the stupidity of the management of STATZ. This is a brilliant series. Lets have an ending along with DEADWOOD. Magic City is my favorite series as of now.

  17. The cancellation of this very interesting show simply illustrates the ever increasing “dumbed-down” nature of millions of Americans. Face it, they want to pump themselves with garbage, eat garbage, and ultimately, watch garbage, and so, garbage they will receive. And because Boss was not the kind of trash that Amecicans so love to watch (basically anything where they can zombie-out and not have to use a single braincell) it got cancelled.

    Is it any wonder >90% of Americans believe in some kind of “god” creature?

    nuff said.

  18. Shame on you starz!!! What a waste…

  19. I’m totally disappointed at Stars’ decision to drop ‘Boss’ at the end of Season 2.
    I was hooked from the beginning. Great cast, respectable acting, good scripts and twisted plotlines – needless to say I was instantly hooked. Primarily because it wasn’t cookie-cutter, mindless, reality-tv garbage. I thought ‘Boss’ was an authentic and gritty look at politics and the undercurrents that so oftentimes go along with it. Kudos’s for Mr. Grammer’s ferocious portrayal as Mayor Tom Kane.

    I really hope a 2 hour closer will take place so the storylines can end properly. I know a full 3rd Season is slim to none. Many of the core characters have no redeeming qualities, are burdened by addiction(s), drunk on power, etc. It’s depressing when well-written, engrossing and intelligent shows come on TV only to get the network axe. In the meantime, I’ve ‘Magic City’ and Netflix’s ‘House of Cards” to fall back on. Again, two additional/exciting shows that are good.

  20. OMG, I was looking for an answer when would the season 3 be on air, and then I found this horrible news. I can’t believe they canceled the show. I was completely hooked with that show. Shame on Starz! Please give us update on when the 2 hrs special come on air.

  21. I was quite surprised to find out that Boss was not renewed. I watched the two seasons on Netflix and was amazed by the range of Kelsey Grammer’s acting ability. This comes from a person that was not a fan of Fraser, never having watched a single episode during it’s tenure. Further, I can say that I was really a Grammer fan at all. I refused to watch it primarily feeling that the humor was slight at best. To me, he and his character brother appeared to be snobs. Right, I said I had not watched a single episode…I had seen clips and the ever so often lead ins to the show. I would like to think of myself as a good critic of drama of all types preferring well acting, writing and cinematography. Netflix has opened up a new platform for me at least to enjoy programming that I had not seen before of just wasn’t originally interested. Anyway, back to my point. Boss was excellent. Chicago with its storied history of political corruption found a new twist to demonstrate political power against the backdrop of “over the top” evil as portrayed by Tom Kane. Well done Mr. Grammer. I thoroughly enjoyed the writing, directing and of course the acting. Sorry to see that it has been cancelled.

  22. This show deserves a proper conclusion! The fans deserve it, and coming out with one will probably bring more popularity the it’s 2 seasons. Put it on Netflix.

  23. Just saw both seasons on Netflex. I have to say it was one of the most intelligent and suspenseful TV dramas ever. So sad no ending.

  24. I am very disappointed that there will be no Ending. will never watch another one of your series again waste of my precious time.


  25. I watched Boss on Netflix and I was truly amazed with the performance of all of the actors and actress, I am extremely shocked that this series did not go further. I actually never heard of this series coming out but had I had known how good it was I would have been one of the faithful watchers. This series is within the top five shows that I have seen, I am not one who watches a lot of tv but would have tuned in. Although i do have cable I never seen tv ads for this show like other series that appears on pay channels maybe this was a mistake on the networks part. A 2 hour conclusion would not do this show any justice, this series needs to play out to what it should have been another Scandal it what they have on there hands and if this network does not continue it another network should try and pick it up!

  26. I had found the show on Netflix as well, and although it got me a couple of episodes to get into it, I finally got hooked and watched both seasons in just a week. It is a great show, with some great acting in it. I only missed someone I could relate to. Every character was an ass who I’d liked to see drop dead. Especially Kane and his wife. There wasn’t really someone to vouch for, as I can in House of Cards.

    I really hope Netflix will make a deal to finish the show. It would be great to see how the story ends. Would it be another 1/2 seasons, then that would be great. Would it be a two hour episode, that would be fine too!

  27. This was the best tv show i have seen, i cant believe it,this is better then mad men please don’t take this tv show away, i hope net flix buys it

  28. Just finished watching both seasons of Boss and I am so disappointed that there is not a season 3. What a great show; wonderful actors, great script, great production. Like many have said previously, I am not a big Kelsey Grammar fan but, I can’t imagine anyone playing Tom Kane any better. I never heard of this show until I saw the preview on Netflix. Please give us a real ending.