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NBC shuts down production on ‘Prime Suspect’

Series left off network's midseason sked

NBC is shutting down production on “Prime Suspect.”

Show was left in the lurch following Monday’s announcement that the Maria Bello starrer wouldn’t have a place in the midseason schedule. Procedural, from Universal Television, currently airs at 10 p.m. Thursday but will be replaced by “The Firm,” which begins its regular run Jan. 12.

“Prime Suspect” has long been a favorite of the network and topper Bob Greenblatt, but viewers have never embraced the skein. “Suspect” is averaging a 1.6 rating/4 share in the 18-49 demo and 5.8 million total viewers.

In trying to generate some viewer retention, Greenblatt double-pumped the show — running it twice in one week — but the numbers have never improved.

While the skein isn’t officially canceled, the halt in production likely means the show will be permanently off the air after its 13-episode order.

With only “Up All Night” and “Grimm” the only new shows working well on the NBC sked, net is looking forward to midseason. Not only will “The Firm” debut, but Greenblatt has high expectations for the Katharine McPhee-Debra Messing starrer “Smash.”

And there’s also the return on reality hit “The Voice,” which starts its second season Feb. 6.

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