Discovery Channel couldn’t attract a caravan of viewers to “Border Live,” which was pulled from the schedule last month after three airings. The final episode aired on Dec. 19, and attracted just 430,000 viewers and a 0.1 rating among adults 18-49.
Discovery had initially announced “Border Live” as a six-part limited series, but in success the show might have continued on — in the vein of A&E’s hugely popular “Live P.D.,” which has inspired a trend of live on-the-ground projects.
But given the disappointing early sampling, the network confirmed to Variety that it decided to end “Border Live” earlier than planned. Hosted in a New York studio by Bill Weir, the show featured live reports from the U.S.-Mexico border, as well as stories from investigative journalist Lilla Luciano from the field.
The launch of “Border Live” couldn’t have been timelier, given the headlines and Donald Trump’s choice to shut down the government over his desire to build a massive wall there. Ultimately, viewers may have had their fill of border talk via the non-stop headlines.
Lucky 8, the production company behind A&E’s hit “60 Days In” franchise, was the producer on “Border Live.” The company had sealed a deal with the Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, the Transportation Security Administration and Customs and Border Protection to film. Crews were embedded with officers and special agents at key border sites from Nogales, Ariz., in the west to the Rio Grande Valley and points east.
“Border Live” also featured the City of San Juan Police Department and Cameron County Sheriff’s Office in Texas, and the Cochise County Sheriff’s Office in Arizona.