HBO Cancels ‘Vinyl,’ Scrapping Plans for a Season 2 Revamp

Vinyl Cancelled HBO
Courtesy of HBO

HBO has scrapped plans for a second season of “Vinyl,” the 1970s-set music biz drama exec produced by Martin Scorsese and Mick Jagger.

The series starring Bobby Cannavale as a larger-than-life record mogul had a rough run in its first season earlier this year, drawing modest ratings and lukewarm reviews. Ray Romano, Olivia Wilde and Juno Temple co-starred.

“After careful consideration, we have decided not to proceed with a second season of ‘Vinyl.’ Obviously, this was not an easy decision,” HBO said in a statement. “We have enormous respect for the creative team and cast for their hard work and passion on this project.”

HBO gave the show a second season renewal after its premiere in February. But by the end of the series’ run in April, HBO announced a showrunner change for season two, with Scott Z. Burns replacing creator Terence Winter. Burns was still in the early stage of working out a blueprint for season two and had not turned in any scripts.

The decision to pull the plug entirely comes after HBO has undergone a big transition in its programming ranks. Last month, Michael Lombardo stepped down after nearly 10 years as programming president and was replaced by Casey Bloys, HBO’s former head of comedy.

It’s understood that in the final analysis, the decision was made that the budget that would have been allocated to revamping “Vinyl” would be better served on other pending projects.

Given its Scorsese-Jagger pedigree, expectations for “Vinyl” had been high leading up to the series premiere in February. But creative troubles were evident early on. In his review for Variety, Brian Lowry wrote that the two-hour series premiere “is a big, messy affair, sometimes mesmerizing, occasionally aggravating, providing a taste of what’s to come while feeling too caught up in stylistic flourishes. All told, this is a huge project that perhaps only HBO could deliver. But so far, the album isn’t quite as good as the liner notes.”

“Vinyl” joins the ranks of the most high-profile one-and-done cancellations in HBO history. In 2012, HBO pulled the plug on a second season of horse-racing drama “Luck” because of the deaths of two horses during production. And in 2008, HBO’s racy comedy “Tell Me You Love Me” was also axed even though it had been renewed for a second year. In 2007, “John from Cincinnati” made its series premiere with a lead-in from the high-rated series finale of “The Sopranos,” then was canceled two months later, the day after its first season ended.

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  1. Johnny says:

    HBO, I will never subscribe to you again YOU SUCK!!!!

    Vinyl should have stayed

  2. Lori says:

    HBO YOU SUCK !!!! YOU CANCELLED A GREAT SHOW . Now I cancel you !!!

  3. lynda white says:

    Please bring back Vinyl! One of the best shows to have ever been on HBO! I was always entertained, and could not wait till the next show! Give this show another shot, and market it!

  4. Kristie Payne says:

    The decision to scrap vinyl was the biggest and stupidest decision HBO has ever made that was the best series ever since Rome and Deadwood. I hope y’all change your decision scrap it and put it back on soon because I will personally take HBO off my television if it is not returned although you probably do not read these comments and do not care but that was the stupidest and dumbest state you could have ever made with HBO take off that stupid show the new pope and put vinyl back on. Stupid just plain stupid the craziest move HBO has ever done y’all have so many other shows that should have been cancelled that are way, way more horrible than vinyl for example the new pope that show is horrible and you decide to cancel season 2 of vinyl is everybody that works at HBO on crack.

  5. Alex Jackson says:

    Personality crisis that was not so hot poorly executed rambling shambling mess… but lots of untapped potential with this show. Great concept and any fan of this era’s music would have loved plus superb cast and beautifully shot feel like this is another deadwood scenario put down too early.
    RIP Richie

    All we are saying is give vinyl a chance at least to season 2

  6. Can’t believe HBO scraped vinyl. Stupid

  7. K. C. Mansfiel says:

    What you did was disgusting it was the best show on HBO.

  8. DSZ says:

    Man, this show was awesome!!! Sex Drugs and rock and roll!!! I think you all underestimated the potential. It was marketed terribly. Ever notice how you at HBO literally market every single show the same way? On your network, in between shows, all the commercials for your shows look the same. You should also consider doing what Netflix does and release the entire season “on demand” all at once. People may like the first episode or two and then you slow it down to build up for the finale, but you may have lost some interest in between. Terribly sad!

  9. natez says:

    I really wanted to like this show, when I heard they cancelled it I thought stupid movie executives, but then when I saw it, I didn’t like it.

  10. Cindy says:

    I dont understand why they would cut this show! I thought it was great and Im very dissapointed in its cut! I binge watched it and couldn’t wait for the next episode. The acting was great and the music was as well! Bring it back!!!!!!

  11. 322 Rich says:

    this sucks. i liked this show. this is why i’m apprehensive about getting invested in any television series. better just to binge-watch all the episodes after a successful five-season run.

  12. this is way showtime’s original programing is so much better than hbo. at this point i feel paying for hbo is a waste of money.

  13. joseph ledford says:

    THIS SUCKS !!! BRING VINYL BACK !!

  14. Kattfish says:

    What???!! I just googled to see when it was starting back up to read it’s been cancelled? This is a great show! Couldn’t stand that stupid, shitty Girls. Cancel it and bring back Vinyl. Seriously considering canceling HBO. Vinyl and GOT was the only reason to subscribe.

  15. Kelly says:

    I’m really bummed about vynil I think they made a big mistake not bringing it back

  16. Sheri Brown says:

    I just Google to see if there was any news about when we might see another season of Vinyl, and saw this sad news. What’s wrong with HBO! They let shows like, Boardwalk Empire and Game of Thrones, but Vinyl, was just getting started! What we DON’T NEED IS MORE STUPID HBO COMEDIES! Things like Girls, which is just awful, they decide to let run on. I am disappointed that the new head of development has come from the comedy division. HBO comedies are stupid! No where near the quality of Showtime’s Shameless! Canceling Vinyl is a big mistake. I almost canceled HBO, after they canceled True Blood. I will cancel it now!! BIG MISTAKE!

  17. Babe Borden says:

    This show is F***KIN awesome!! And with Bobby Cannavale at the helm of the ship who acts with heart, soul, grit, and true artistry, why would HBO cancel it??? Being a singer who cut her rock teeth playing grungy NYC clubs from dives on Avenue C to Bowery Electric and The Shrine in Harlem, I realize I may be a bit biased in my opinion, and feel great nostalgia for the magical medium of the vinyl record. But there is a mythological realness to this series that is rare and truly seductive. I’ve been following a couple other HBO series, but nothing comes close to this one. Boooo HBO!!! Resurrect VINYL!!!!

  18. Dave Currie says:

    This truly is tragic absolutely everything about that show was superb I’m shocked and saddened that someone doesn’t see the sheer potential. I hope someone picks it up you’re throwing the baby out with the bath water!

    • Susan Hawkins says:

      I just googled about when Vinyl was going to appear again. I don’t understand why this was cancelled. I was promoting the show at work and with friends. I’m floored. There are some shows on HBO that should not still be on. They have run their course, so remove them. This show was original, and trailblazing. I LOVED THE MUSIC!!! Brought back tons of memories. It is a mistake.

  19. Jackson says:

    canceled HBO until Vinyl or GOT, just googled to find out when season 2 of Vinyl was going to air and this shocked me. It was one of the top dramas I had seen and I’m in my mid 40’s; the writing, acting, sets, music, scenes, atmosphere, lighting, setting – everything about it was impeccable – dark, gritty, it really took you back in time and you could lose yourself for an hour. I’m scratching my head on this decision.. like someone else had posted, it takes people time to generate mass appeal. I binged watched Breaking Bad after season 4 ended, as a result of word of mouth; i feel like Vinyl had that same appeal – dumb decision HBO!

  20. Amy Lawler says:

    Might have to cancel HBO. Was really looking forward to this second season! Damn!

  21. Vinyl was the best show to come along in quite some time, superb cast and writing. HBO made a huge mistake and it’s time for me to cancel as there aren’t any other decent (new) series on the network. I can only hope that another network will pick up this series.

  22. Haftalaf says:

    This series deserves to complete it’s story like the series “Six Feet Under” did. There are so many more stories to tell before they end “Vinyl” in a complete, full circle way. Great actors, great writing, great story telling. There has to be someone or a group with vision and dough who will pick this series up and continue to run with it so that it ends in a great way. On top.

  23. Justin says:

    So… they’ve kept that abomination called “Girls” since 2012… and then get rid of a show that had some serious potential? Disappointed in HBO…

  24. Janice says:

    I just googled to see when Vinyl’s second season was airing. I was shocked to see that it has been cancelled. I loved that show. I watched it over and over again. I hope HBO reconsiders its return. I have been looking so forward to it. What a disappointment.

  25. Carl Benson says:

    Horrible, tedious mess. Should have been a huge hit – the 70s music scene? How could you not make a great look-back show about that? Other than Bobby, the cast sucked – especially ole nasal-voiced Ray Romano. They just took everything way over the top and made it cartoon-like. Nothing believable or interesting.

  26. Patty says:

    Hoping HBO will reconsider. Vinyl is a true, awesome drama with fantastic acting and music. I too have only kept HBO to watch Season 2. Terrific cast, just heart broken

  27. Joseph smith says:

    I can’t believe this show is gone.HBO you really suck.this is the reason I bought a Amazon Fire stick becomes if you want to see good shows you can’t rely on HBO.This could have been the next Sapranos.

  28. Maggie says:

    Yeah makes me want to get rid of HBO DONT NEED IT THEY ARE STUPID GIVE SOMETHING A CHANCE FOR PEOPLE TO SEE AND HEAR ABOUT

  29. Maggie says:

    I am very upset over HBO canceling Vinyl I loved the show started watching later in the season and went back to on demand and watched the whole first season loved it and watched it again and know a lot of people that are also upset over their decision how dumb there are some of us who couldn’t wait for the next season

  30. Sunniva says:

    Too bad. we really enjoyed this. Messy affair or not, it had its own special charm, and attraction. The rough edges made it different from other shows.

  31. Mary says:

    We really enjoyed this show. It was one of the very few we tried to never miss n when we knew we would, we’d DVR it.This really sucks.

  32. tri quarter says:

    this sucks

  33. Morons! It takes time for people to know about a new show. I only watched Boardwalk empire this year. Vinyl was going to be the only reason to keep HBO. The rest of the shit is crap!

  34. Laurie says:

    Geez, I DVR’d the final episode to watch at a later date, which was tonight. I was really hooked on that show. Great acting, especially, Bobby Cannavale. I was looking forward to season 2, and just found out even though plans were to renew, that instead they canceled. Bad move on HBO’s part. There’s absolute crap on TV. Basically at night I watch MeTV, or Antenna TV, which show decent sitcoms from the 70’s, like Barney Miller, All in the Family, Carol Burnett, Johnny Carson, etc. The only reason I renewed HBO was to watch Vinyl. I hope this show gets picked up by another cable or, network or subscription.

  35. Berry says:

    Makes me want to go home and cancel my HBO

  36. Pierre says:

    Big ego HBO…. watch out, The big boss is us….

  37. Ant Mo says:

    we need more than 137 comments so HBO or OR SOMEONE ELSE PICKS UP SECOND SEASON.Please feel our Pain.

  38. Zoe says:

    Wow and shite! Cancel the brainiac who decided to cut this incredible show! Or publicize it more…get out the word…put in some marketing effort. Hope another network, cable channel, online…anyone…picks it up. Too good to be dismissed!

  39. Renee says:

    Disgusted that HBO is not renewing Vinyl. Whoever is in charge at HBO made a big mistake. Sometimes you have to have faith and patience in something. Everything does not have to be instant. I lived through that era and the show was excellent in every way.

  40. Annette says:

    Typical HBO. WHEN SOMETHING IS FACTUALLY REALITY TELEVISION, HBO TAKES A HIKE… YOU CANCELLED VINYL… I CANCELLED HBO. BYE BYE!!!!!!!!!

  41. Anton says:

    Its the only reason I was going to renew my SKY subscription – gees HBO forget what the critics say and listen to those who give a f$ck about good viewing i.e. the folk that pay the bills. Stop messing around and get it sorted – Vinyl is a blast!

  42. Donna says:

    I loved Vinyl and watched it every week – more than once each week. This is why I watch Showtime more – you get invested in a season and boom, gone!

  43. Mark Turner says:

    I amazed HBO stays in business.They are famous for axing series before they are done i.e. Deadwood, Rome, The Wire, The Newsroom and countless other less notables. I wonder why anyone would ever go there to make a series in the first place. Stupidity maybe?

  44. That not right after I got HBO to watch Vinyl and found something I liked and now you just cut the cord wow so that how you get people to pay for HBO buy I won’t depend on yall I done with Game of thrones just to old fashioned and not into it you want me and my family to watch HBO you need to bring it back I been waiting on it I just found out yall cut it

  45. Penny Sundman says:

    I cannot believe this series was cancelled. I got into the series late and had to binge watch to catch up and absolutely loved it. I just now thought to try and find out when series 2 would premiere only to read it won’t. I was thinking of cancelling HBO because when I try to find a movie to watch it’s always the same crap playing, but then I discovered Vinyl and suddenly I didn’t want to lose HBO. My decision now becomes easier.

  46. Lynda king says:

    Not happy at all about this cancellation. This show kept one intrigued and found me, the viewer,caring about the characters. Bobby Cannavale had a raw energy that kept the viewer empathizing with his character then despising his actions. I’m so upset HBO didn’t give Vinyl a fighting chance.

  47. Steve says:

    Crazy decision.
    A show that, while having some teething issues in the first season, had a huge scope for expanding and a platform of introducing new characters. This show had a ‘feel’ about it that hardly any others had. I always described it as Almost Famous/Dazed & Confused meets Wolf of Wall Street with it’s content and way it was shot.

    Yes it was disjointed in parts, but I loved this show.
    So many shows start off so well, then fade into nothing when you realise there’s little potential for improvement, yet this in the opposite sense of starting well, with loads of potential, was never given the chance to become something amazing and realising it.

  48. D. Maestri says:

    Why are you selling the DVD when there is no 2nd season. No ending!!!!!!!

  49. Cheri Gott says:

    There is so much crap on TV and “Vinyl” gets cancelled. It was my favorite show. Very clever. I usually don’t subscribe to HBO but I did to watch “Vinyl” I will now cancel. No reason to watch. Dumb move !!!

  50. Bob says:

    I’m with the 95% of those that commented here. Was my favorite show ever. Period. I was lucky enough to have the free HBO promotion on my subscription so I got the chance to see something incredbily spectacular. I had never purchased a premium channel ever, but was about to do it for the first time in order to see seasons 2, 3, 4, 5….of Vinyl, but now I’m heartbroken. I will never purchase HBO.

    Yes, HBO you suck. You can add me as a loss in subscription business.

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