Showtimes Cancels THE BORGIAS; Showrunner Neil Jordan Reveals Desired Ending

     June 5, 2013

Showtime’s rich, complicated Renaissance drama The Borgias will be coming to an end earlier than expected.  The third season finale on June 16th will also serve as a series finale, as Showtime has also scrapped plans for a two-hour wrap-up movie.  Though The Borgias held steady in the ratings this year, its production costs were deemed too high to continue.  Additionally, creator Neil Jordan wasn’t sure he had enough material in mind for a full fourth season, but had still hoped to be able to wrap things up for Pope Alexander (Jeremy Irons), Cesare (François Arnaud) and Lucrezia  (Holliday Grainger) with a film.

The series’ complexity and intense drama has kept it on critics’ radars throughout its run (and included a Golden Globe nomination for Irons and 10 Emmys for the series so far), but unfortunately it never gained the exposure or interest of a period drama series like HBO’s Game of Thrones (and admittedly was never as engaging, though still made for great TV).  Hit the jump for more on what Jordan had to say about the finale, and the way he had hoped to end the series in a movie.

the-borgias-season-3According to Deadline, at a point during the filming of the third season, Jeremy Irons turned to Jordan and said “this feels like the end of something, that the family has come to an end.”  The Borgia family went through a lot to end the second season and throughout the third, including Cesare’s murder of his brother Juan (David Oakes) as well as Cesare and Lucrezia consummating their incestuous love for one another (something viewers have been expecting since the series began).  Jordan said of the decision to the end the series early, “I would have loved to bring all the characters to a conclusion. All of the actors were heartbroken we couldn’t continue, and so was I.”

Showtime Entertainment president David Nevins said,

“Ultimately the show was designed as a regular series, and I was reluctant to do an extra two-hour disconnected from the whole that could be potentially anti-climactic.  Now we have a nice upward build towards the finale. We have a nice ending, a good climax, and I didn’t want to muck it up with an afterthought.”

He went on to praise Jordan, saying, “This is what premium television can do — take stories that can’t be contained in two-hour movie and blow them up to make an amazing series. The Borgias is Auteur Television at its best.”

As for Jordan’s vision of the true finale of the series,

“I wanted a totally biblical ending, for the Pope to burn in hell. That is how he wrote the proposed two-hour finale, with the Pope dying and no one willing to hear his confession. When they finally find a confessor and the Pope starts to repent his sins, the confessor interrupts him, saying, ‘I’m sorry, it’s too late, you’re already dead and burning in hell.’ This satisfies all moral feelings about the Pope.”

While the third season lacked a certain spark that held together the first two seasons — maybe it was the lack of Juan, or the breaking of the tension between Cesare and Lucrezia, or the fact that the Pope was finally starting to pay for his sins — but it seems like things will be ending for the Borgia family now on a high note, especially for the siblings, which ultimately is good news.  Whether fans end up thinking it’s satisfactory remains to be seen.

Around The Web

Television

ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK’s Jenji Kohan Comments on Binge-Watching Backlash

Perhaps binge-watching is not the way of the future after all, or perhaps it's just not meant for every series; Jenji Kohan, Matthew Weiner, and more weigh in.

GAME OF THRONES Season 5 Has a Dynamic Duo Problem

The HBO series succeeds thanks to dramatic tension gained from fascinating character pairings, but Season 5 has whiffed just about every pair it's put together.

FEAR THE WALKING DEAD Set Photos Reveal Pilot Episode Production for AMC

Shots of Kim Dickens and Cliff Curtis on set included, as well as the fantastically bearded Robert Kirkman.

DOCTOR WHO Panel at San Diego Comic-Con to Include Peter Capaldi

Chances of him going all Malcolm Tucker on a vacationing customer service representative dressed as the Heath-Ledger Joker are frankly a mortal lock.

COMMUNITY Recap: “Wedding Videography”

The gang attends Garrett’s wedding, then things get dark.

New COMEDIANS IN CARS GETTING COFFEE Trailer Teases Colbert, SEINFELD Reunion, More

Season 6 of Jerry Seinfeld's webseries talk show includes Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jim Carrey, and Trevor Noah.

Is GAME OF THRONES Season 6 Returning to Pyke?

Those who are not interested in book spoilers beware.

  • Possible Spoiler

Bill Paxton, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Olivier Martinez Talk TEXAS RISING

'Texas Rising' is a 10-hour, 5-part mini-series, airing on the History Channel on May 25th and 26th, and June 1st, 8th and 15th.

15 Things to Know About UNDER THE DOME Season 3

Dean Norris, Marg Helgenberger, showrunner Neal Baer, and executive producer Tim Schlattmann talk about the upcoming season of the CBS series.

TWIN PEAKS Season 3 Gets Expanded 18-Episode Order

Plus, the new season will restore the original diner and feature music from Angelo Badalamenti.

Page 1 of 68412345...102030...Last »