AMC Cancels Sci-Fi Series After Season 2 Renewal

By Nathan Kamal | Published

moonhaven season 2

Moonhaven has been canceled by AMC+, despite season 2 having been approved by the network earlier this year. Per a report in Deadline, Moonhaven season 2 will not go into production, despite an announcement in July that the network had decided to go forward with the critically acclaimed science fiction series. It is probable that the abrupt reversal is connected with AMC’s recent financial woes, though it is certainly unusual for a show to be canceled after publicly receiving a green light. 

Moonhaven was a dystopian science fiction series, taking place on a moon colony that had achieved an apparent utopian level of advancement while working to save a ravaged Earth. The idea of Moonhaven as a perfect society is thrown into question by a murder; a detective played by Lost’s Dominic Monaghan and a pilot played by Emma McDonald jointly investigate the killing and begin to unearth signs of a conspiracy involving the imminent return of moon denizens to the Earth. Now that Moonhaven has been shut down by AMC, there is no knowing where season 2 might have developed into.

The first season of Moonhaven consisted of six episodes and, reportedly, at one point, AMC considered green-lighting the show with two full seasons ordered. As it is, it seems that Moonhaven season 2 will not be happening at all, which is a telling sign of where the various streaming services are currently at in terms of financing. It seems that despite the massive popularity of various streaming services (plus the fact that nearly all of them are increasing their monthly fees), the companies who create streaming content are worried about the costs of producing it. 

Moonhaven was created and directed by Peter Ocko, who has already had one critically acclaimed AMC series canceled before its time. Ocko’s previous series Lodge 49 starred Wyatt Russell as an aimless, affable former California surfer who becomes entangled in the mysteries of a fraternal organization. That show at least managed to get two full seasons before being canceled due to low viewership, while Moonhaven is cashing out before the projected season 2.

AMC Networks (the parent company of AMC+) has recently announced a wide variety of cost-cutting measures, including laying off 20% of its U.S. staff and writing down up to $475 million in losses. The latter tactic seems to be increasingly favored by media companies; the basic idea is that a company like AMC or Disney can claim a project is a financial failure and thus take a tax deduction for the cost. Most notoriously, Warner Bros. Discovery preemptively declared the Batgirl film produced for HBO Max a financial loss and permanently shelved it, allegedly to secure a tax credit.

In addition to the lay-offs and write-downs, AMC CEO Christina Spade has stepped down from her position. Taken together, the departure of a CEO and the cancelation of Moonhaven season 2 seem to indicate a whole lot of belts are being tightened over at AMC Networks. At least the company is still committed to producing as many Walking Dead shows as it possibly can.