Showtime Won’t Buy “The Farm”


Showtime will not be airing The L Word spinoff The Farm, the entertainment industry’s leading trade publications are reporting today.

“Showtime is zeroing in on new series pickups,” Variety reports, and “it’s understood that the pay cabler has passed on … The Farm, an L Word spinoff from producer Ilene Chaiken.” According to The Hollywood Reporter, earlier this week “the network informed the producers of two pilots — the L-Word spinoff starring Leisha Hailey and the Matthew Perry/Peter Tolan comedy The End of Steve — that they would not continue.”

The L Word and The Farm creator Ilene Chaiken

The pilot for the women-in-prison drama focused on The L Word‘s Alice (Leisha Hailey) after she is convicted of killing Jenny (Mia Kirshner), whose death was left unresolved in the series finale of the lesbian drama last month.

Although the actresses were unaware of the murder plot during filming, the entire final season of The L Word revolved around “Who Killed Jenny?” Showtime posed this question repeatedly on television and online before and during the eight-episode sixth season, with storylines written to give each of the main characters a motive for the murder.

But when the series ended on March 8, the question remained unanswered, primarily because, Chaiken told The L.A. Times in January, “I don’t actually feel compelled to answer it.”

With the announcement of The Farm spinoff in the works, however, it was widely assumed by viewers that Alice would be convicted of the crime, although it is not known whether she actually committed it.

Alice (Leisha Hailey) being interrogated in the L Word finale

At the TCA Winter Press Tour in January, Showtime Entertainment President Robin Greenblatt described The Farm as “grittier” than other female prison dramas, with only a few lesbians among the large cast of characters.

Famke Janssen, Melissa Leo, and Laurie Metcalfe had guest roles in the pilot, with the possibility of becoming series regulars.

Showtime has not yet officially commented on the status of The Farm.

Hailey is currently busy promoting her band Uh Huh Her.

With The L Word over and The Farm unlikely to air, there are few regular lesbian or bisexual characters slated to appear on primetime cable or premium TV in the near future. There are currently no lesbian characters in regular roles on primetime broadcast TV, and only three regular bisexual characters.

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