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'The Kennedys' Canceled by History Channel, May Go to Cable

January 8, 2011 (2:59 am) GMT
A&E Television Networks decided that the eight-part miniseries is not the right fit for the network with rigorous standards, and has reportedly shelved it for a pay cable broadcast.

Those waiting in anticipation for the Spring premiere of "" on History Channel will be disappointed. The miniseries has been canned after A&E Television Networks made a surprising move to cancel the plans to broadcast it because it is "not a fit for the History brand".

"Upon completion of the production of 'The Kennedys', History has decided not to air the 8-part miniseries on the network," a rep for the network tells THR in a statement. "While the film is produced and acted with the highest quality, after viewing the final product in its totality, we have concluded this dramatic interpretation is not a fit for the History brand."

The project cost multi-million dollar, thus is the network's most expensive program ever. However, the content and accuracy have been disputed since the project was announced back in December 2009. Some Kennedy historians disagreed with the script developed by Joel Surnow and written by Stephen Kronish. John F. Kennedy adviser Theodore Sorenson even called it "vindictive" and "malicious."

History and A&E went on revising the script and had the final version vetted by experts. The production moved on with portraying John F. Kennedy and as Jackie O, and was completed last year. But the final viewing showed that it was not considered historically accurate enough for the network's rigorous standards.

"We recognize historical fiction is an important medium for storytelling and commend all the hard work and passion that has gone into the making of the series, but ultimately deem this as the right programming decision for our network," a rep tells THR.

On the brighter side, the miniseries is still scheduled to air in Canada on March 6 and internationally on a later date. There is a possibility that A&E would sell it to a pay cable channel for the U.S. broadcast, a similar move picked to air "The Reagans" which was was supposed to air on CBS in 2003 but was scrapped and later showed up on Showtime.


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