Peacock has scrapped the adaptation of the comic book series Dead Day hailing from Vampire Diaries creators Julie Plec and Kevin Williamson, Variety has reported. The move comes after the show was ordered straight-to-series for its streaming service back in January 2022. Plec and Williamson were set to serve as writers, executive producers, and co-showrunners on the series, with Universal Television producing. Per the report, the studio is now planning to shop the project to other outlets. Peacock had bought the series preemptively so this will mark the first time it has been shown to other buyers.
Based on the comic run by the same name Dead Day showcased an ensemble of characters preparing to survive the annual “dead day,” when for one night the dead come back to visit family and friends, celebrate, complete unfinished business, be that to celebrate a night back on earth or to torment the living. The series’ scrapping follows the cancelation of Plec and Willamson’s other series Vampire Academy after the first season by the network.
For now, Plec still has the series The Girls on the Bus at HBO Max and also opened a writers’ room for the mystery drama Freeman for Peacock. She stays under her overall deal with the network. She also has other projects set up at Amazon, and Netflix. Williamson recently produced and co-wrote the screenplay for the Peacock slasher film Sick, and is an executive producer on the recent fifth Scream film, with the sixth due to be released later this year.
As for Peacock, the streamer is in the midst of shifting its programming strategy under Susan Rovner. It is said to be looking for more bingeable comedies and more event-series type dramas, such as The Best Man: The Final Chapters. The series became the first Peacock show to hit the Nielsen top 10 streaming charts. In the same vein, the streamer also released Poker Face starring Natasha Lyonne which is created by Rian Johnson, who is currently riding high on the success of Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, for which he also got an Oscar nomination in Best Adapted Screenplay category. Poker Face is a mystery-of-the-week kind of drama with a plethora of guest roles from Hollywood A-listers. The show has already been met with significant critical acclaim upon its debut.
Dead Day’s cancellation comes amid a wider industry trend of shows getting scrapped despite series orders or renewals. AMC also recently dumped a number of its shows, such as Demascus, 61st Street, and Invitation to a Bonfire.