The Big Picture
- HBO has cancelled controversial drama series The Idol starring The Weeknd and Lily-Rose Depp due to poor reception from fans and mixed critical reviews.
- The series, which premiered at Cannes, failed to make a mark with its story about a pop idol’s complicated relationship with a club owner.
- Despite hopes of addressing the exploitation of women in the music industry, The Idol missed the point and received a low 18% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
HBO has decided not to renew another season of its controversial drama The Idol starring The Weeknd and Lily-Rose Depp, Variety has reported. The cancellation does not come as a surprise as fans received the series poorly upon its debut in June, earlier this year. The series – created by Sam Levinson, The Weeknd (born Abel Tesfaye), and Reza Fahim – made its world premiere at the 76th Cannes Film Festival to very mixed critical reviews, though there was a hope that the audience might take kindly to it. However, the series failed to make a mark.
The series follows Jocelyn (Depp) as a pop idol looking to rebrand herself after a nervous breakdown due to her mother’s death, As she aims to reclaim her musical identity, she meets Tedros (Tesfaye), a parasitic club owner, who soon takes over her life and work. Their complicated relationship and Jocelyn’s drive to make a comeback, which makes the crux of the series, fails to indulge the audience.
‘The Idol’s Troubled Journey to Screen
The Idol was reported to be a troubled production as news broke in April 2022 that original director Amy Seimetz had exited the series due to creative differences and Levinson has stepped in as the director. Billed as a satire on the exploitation of women in the music industry, and after much creative overhaul, the show ended up missing the point of the commentary it was aiming to make.
The series debuted with modest viewership numbers and holds a rating of 18% on Rotten Tomatoes and all over has very few redeeming qualities. An HBO spokesperson said of the show, “After much thought and consideration, HBO, as well as the creators and producers have decided not to move forward with a second season. We’re grateful to the creators, cast, and crew for their incredible work.”
Along with Depp as Jocelyn and the Weeknd as Tedros, the series also casts Suzanna Son as Chloe, Troye Sivan as Xander, Jane Adams as Nikki Katz. Further rounding off the cast are Jennie Ruby Jane as Dyanne, Rachel Sennott as Leia, Hari Nef as Talia Hirsch, Moses Sumney as Izaak, Da’Vine Joy Randolph as Destiny, Hank Azaria as Chaim, and more.
The Idol is available on Max.
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