FX’s John Landgraf on Shows Canceled After Renewals, Wiped From Streaming: ‘We Wouldn’t Rule Anything Out’

FX boss John Landgraf broke down the recent trend of shows being canceled mid-production and old seasons being pulled off streaming services.

During his highly-anticipated annual executive session at the Television Critics Association winter press tour, Landgraf said FX did not have “any specific plans” to make similar moves but they “wouldn’t rule anything out.”

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A number of major media companies, most infamously Warner Bros. Discovery, have been scrapping shows in cost-cutting moves, even if the shows had completed productions on new seasons that now will never air. Most recently, it was reported that AMC had reversed renewal decisions on a number of scripted originals.

He went on to say that as new technologies have emerged throughout the history of media, “there’s a long process of optimizing how you tell stories and how you distribute stories through that technology.” He compared today’s glut of shows — 599 in 2022 according to FX’s calculations — to the early days of Hollywood film studios, when they would churn out large numbers of films without much regard for quality or marketing.

“Making fewer, bigger, longer movies and marketing them and distributing them and licensing them had a better economic impact than just flooding the zone with things that are consumed and then discarded,” he said.

He then said that, although streaming has upended the industry, you cannot simplify the process of reaching audiences as much as some streaming advocates would have though.

“Film has had multiple windows,” he continued. “It’s figuring it out again. You just can’t take this infinite amount of money and dump it on something. For one thing, it gets stale.”

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