The second season of USA's series Shooter will be shortened due to an injury star Ryan Phillippe suffered. While the network has never reached the prestige level of an AMC or an FX when it comes to the quality of its original programming, their shows still tend to attract good viewership and loyal fanbases, at least when it comes to the world of basic cable. One of USA's fastest rising shows of the moment is action/drama Shooter, starring Ryan Phillippe (Damages). Shooter recently began airing season 2, but sadly for fans, it looks like production on the season will have to be cut short.
Based on both the 2007 Mark Wahlberg film of the same name and the novel - Point of Impact by Stephen Hunter - that inspired that film, USA's Shooter stars Phillippe as Bob Lee Swagger, an elite U.S. marine sniper living in exile who reluctantly returns to action in order to derail a supposed plot to kill the president. While Shooter season 1 received mixed reviews from critics, it did well enough in the ratings to almost instantly vault up the ladder of most popular original series on USA.
Season 2 has seen a slight ratings dip so far - although at only 2 episodes in, it's a bit unfair to try and predict how its overall season average will shake out - but is still holding strong as USA's second most watched original show. Thus, it's likely that Shooter's series finale is a long way off. Unfortunately, Deadline reports that due to a broken leg suffered by Phillippe away from the set, Shooter season 2 won't be able to complete production on its 10-episode order. Instead, episode 8 - the last completed episode - will serve as the unplanned season finale.
Phillippe's injury occurred after production had already commenced on episode 9, and filming continued for a bit without the actor, while his medical issues were assessed. Ultimately though, the decision was made to scrap what had been shot for episode 9, and cut season 2 down to 8 episodes. There is reportedly a plot turn in episode 8 that lends itself to being a season finale, so both producers and USA are said to be happy with how things will wrap up.
While Shooter season 3 has yet to be officially ordered by USA, its aforementioned ratings success makes a pick-up seem likely, especially now that the show's creative team didn't get to fully tell the planned story for season 2. Here's hoping that Phillippe doesn't fall victim to anymore unfortunate accidents once season 3 production has begun.
Shooter season 2 airs Tuesday nights on USA.