‘First Kill’ Showrunner Addresses Netflix Cancellation

Although you may not have seen it, if you’re a social media user, you’ve probably at least heard of it. First murder for now. Netflix’s supernatural drama launched on the streaming service in June and quickly gained a following online, but those fans were especially vocal earlier this week when the show was canceled after just eight episodes. Now, First murderThe showrunner of is speaking about her disappointment.

In an interview with The Daily Beast this week, Felicia D. Henderson, whose other genre credits include Stripe and those of netflix The Punisher series: He cited Netflix’s marketing efforts as one of the reasons the show might not have found a wide enough audience for the streamer to keep it for a second season.

“The initial marketing art was beautiful,” said Henderson. “I think I was hoping that that would be the beginning and that the other equally compelling and important elements of the show (monsters vs. monster hunters, the battle between two powerful matriarchs, etc.) would eventually get promoted, and that didn’t happen. .”

Created by best-selling genre author VE Schwab, based on her short story of the same name, the series follows Juliette (Sarah Catherine Hook), a member of a powerful vampire dynasty who has come of age and must undertake her “first murder.” “. and take his rightful place in her family. Things get complicated when she falls for Calliope (Imani Lewis), a new girl in town who happens to be a member of a powerful family of monster hunters. Even though her background pits them against each other, Juliette and Calliope can’t deny their feelings, even if their connection could spark a conflict far bigger than the two of them.

The show surged two months ago to strong early viewership numbers, breaking into the Top 10 and, according to Deadline, hitting third place during its first week, trailing only Netflix’s perennial hits. Strange things Y Peaky Blinders, which had just released new rounds of episodes. However, according to Henderson, the big test for Netflix executives wasn’t how many people watched the show, but how many people chose to finish it.

“When I got the call to say they weren’t going to renew the show because the completion rate wasn’t high enough, of course I was very disappointed,” Henderson said. “What showrunner wouldn’t be? They had told me a couple of weeks ago that they expected completion to be higher. I suppose not.

Fans have spent the last few days trying to rally support for the show on social media with hashtags like #RenewFirstKill, and a Change.org petition for a second season has garnered several thousand signatures at the time of this writing. It may not be enough to change the broadcaster’s mind, but for now, Henderson is more focused on praising her collaborators and celebrating the time she spent working on the series, and acknowledging the work Netflix did initially to make the show. .

“They licensed the IP, paid for a pilot script and gave it a healthy production budget,” he said. “The creative team was very supportive when we were shooting the show in harrowing conditions, before there were ‘vaccines for all’ in Atlanta, a very overcrowded production center.”

Henderson added, “I think this cast is among the most talented I’ve ever worked with. And their chemistry? Fire, sure. The show is great and we were in the top five globally and nationally for three of the first four weeks. I had high hopes.”

If you want to see for yourself what the fuss is about, all eight episodes of First murderThe first season of is now streaming on Netflix.

Looking for more supernatural drama? Peacock’s Vampire Academy opens Thursday, September 15 on Peacock.

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