If you’ve been paying attention to the network TV’s spring lineup, you might be a little confused as to why we’re approaching the final batch of mid-season premieres and you still haven’t heard anything about Shonda Rhimes’ “Still Star-Crossed.”
ABC announced the pickup for the first season of Rhimes’ historical fiction, based on a book by Melinda Taub — but since then, it’s lingered in no-man’s-land.
The story focuses on the aftermath of the tragic tale of Romeo and Juliet, and the attempted reconciliation of the Houses of Montague and Capulet. The prologue might say the deaths of “Romeo & Juliet” buried their parents’ strife… But we’ve got the distinct feeling it wasn’t all just water under the bridge, after all that murder, suicide and treachery.
While the plot sounds interesting enough, the show has languished in limbo during the 2016-2017 TV season, and it doesn’t look like it will be on the ABC slate any time soon.
When asked about the project at the TCA Winter Press tour, ABC exec Channing Dungey said the project just didn’t feel ready in time for a spring premiere.
“It has all of the great hallmarks of a Shondaland project, but it also is very epic in terms of its scope and scale, and we did not want to rush it into a place where we felt like it wasn’t ready,” Dungey said. “We are talking about summer; there is also a possibility that it becomes something for fall.”
As the summer season approaches, we’ve still gotten no word on whether this series will ever see the light of day — which makes us wonder if maybe it’s time to write this one off as a pipe dream. Shonda Rhimes is the rainmaker at ABC, but every good writer cranks out a few duds in their lifetime, and “Still Star-Crossed” might be just that.
From the jump, a period piece set in the world of “Romeo & Juliet” didn’t scream Shonda Rhimes to us, and the teaser and trailer didn’t exactly light any fires either. If this series continues to get bumped for more appealing projects (remember, it’s going to have to compete with a whole slew of 2017 pilots in the coming months), we can’t help but wonder if ABC should table this show until it comes up with a more compelling offer.