Phoebe Waller-Bridge debut US show cancelled after one season

Telegraph reporters
·2-min read
The 34-year-old's new black comedy was axed by HBO after seven episodes - Getty Images
The 34-year-old's new black comedy was axed by HBO after seven episodes - Getty Images

Phoebe Waller-Bridge has suffered her first major career setback after an American television network cancelled her debut US show after its first season.

The 34-year-old's new black comedy Run was axed by HBO after seven episodes aired earlier this year.

The decision marks the first major hiccup in the Emmy and Golden Globe winner writer and star's career.

Run, which starred Merritt Wever and Domhnall Gleeson, was penned by Waller-Bridge and her Killing Eve and Fleabag co-creator Vicky Jones.

It tells the story of two people who walk out on their families to travel across America 17 years after making a pact with one another.

Television sources in Los Angeles indicated that while the show was received positively by critics, it "failed to connect with HBO's comedy audience."

HBO confirmed on Friday the show would not be returning for a second series.

A spokesman for HBO said: "After exploring potential ways of continuing Ruby and Billy's journey, together with show runner Vicky Jones, we have come to the decision that we will not be moving forward with a second season of Run."

A source added: "Run was liked by network bosses at a time when Fleabag and Killing Eve were the hottest things on the planet.

"However Run just did not translate to HBO audiences as expected. They are used to things like Curb Your Enthusiasm and Barry, which are a different tone to Run.

"The critical response was strong, but that did not quite translate into the same audience love.

"Negotiations took place about how to move forward and attempt to capture a wider viewership, but the creative process stalled and both parties walked away."

The setback is not expected to deter Waller-Bridge from writing TV shows aimed at US audiences.

"Sure it is the first flop for Phoebe Stateside, but she does not have time to lick her wounds.

"Her production development deal with Amazon Studios means that she has three years of pitching concepts and series to them exclusively with a fine development budget on the table," the source added.

Waller-Bridge became one of Hollywood's biggest rising stars in September thanks to Fleabag, which won six Emmys, including comedy series, lead actress in a comedy series, writing, directing, casting and editing for a comedy series.

She was also is the creator/executive producer of BBC America drama Killing Eve.