J.J. Abrams Sci-Fi Drama Demimonde Officially Scrapped at HBO

J.J. Abrams’ big comeback as a TV writer isn’t happening after all: HBO has scrapped Abrams’ sci-fi drama Demimonde, more than four years after handing it a series order, TVLine has learned.

The official announcement comes two weeks after The Hollywood Reporter revealed that Demimonde was on the bubble, with David Zaslav — the CEO of HBO’s newly formed parent company Warner Bros. Discovery — reportedly voicing frustrations about the lack of output from the rich overall deal HBO signed with Abrams’ production company Bad Robot. Abrams was reportedly seeking a budget for Demimonde that topped $200 million, a number that even tops the budget of the upcoming Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon.

Details on Demimonde were sketchy, but it was described as “an epic and intimate sci-fi fantasy drama” about a world’s battle against a monstrously oppressive force. Abrams wrote and created the series, in what would have been his first solo creator credit since ABC’s Alias way back in 2001. (He co-created Lost and Fringe with other writers.)

Demimonde landed a straight-to-series order from HBO in February 2018 after a bidding war with Apple TV+. Not much news emerged on the project in the years that followed, though, until this April, when Danielle Deadwyler (Station Eleven, Watchmen) was cast in a starring role as “a woman who is torn away from her husband and daughter in a brutal scientific accident.”

Are you bummed we won’t get to see J.J. Abrams’ vision for Demimonde? Hit the comments to share your thoughts.

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