For the second time, Designated Survivor has been canceled. Netflix confirmed the series will not return for its fourth season. The streamer saved the show after it was canceled by ABC in 2018 following its second season.
The Kiefer Sutherland starrer was notable for its plagued production. The series had five showrunners over two seasons and Sutherland’s co-star, Nathasha McElhorne, left the show during season 2 to pursue another project. After ABC canceled the show, it was months before Netflix decided to pick up a third season, as well as purchase the streaming rights to seasons one and two for the U.S. and Canada.
Netflix put out an official statement on the cancellation:
“We are proud to have offered fans a third season of Designated Survivor, and will continue to carry all three seasons for years to come. We’re especially thankful to star and executive producer Kiefer Sutherland, who brought passion, dedication and an unforgettable performance as President Kirkman. We’re also grateful to showrunner/executive producer Neal Bear for his guiding vision and steady hand, creator/executive producer David Guggenheim and EPs Mark Gordon, Suzan Bymel, Simon Kinberg, Aditya Sood and Peter Noah along with the cast and crew who crafted a compelling and satisfying final season.”
While Netflix has an 80 percent success rate for freshman shows according to THR, the company continues to curb its lavish spending. Designated Survivor was not the only casualty; Tuca and Bertie, an animated series starring Tiffany Haddish and Ali Wong, was also on the chopping block.
It’s highly unlikely Designated Survivor will be saved a third time. Stranger things have happened though, and we’ll report back if some network or online service, months from now, decides they need their Kiefer fix.