After just one season, HBO’s controversial series “The Idol” will not continue.
“The Idol was one of HBO’s most provocative original programs and we’re pleased by the strong audience response,” the spokesperson told NBC News. “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.”
The five-episode series concluded on July 2. It starred Tesfaye as Tedros, a shady club owner who takes aspiring pop star Jocelyn, played by Lily-Rose Depp, under his wing.
Controversy surrounding ‘The Idol’
The show was plagued with controversy throughout its production and release.
In March, Rolling Stone published a report headlined “‘The Idol’: How HBO’s Next ‘Euphoria’ Became Twisted ‘Torture Porn.’” In it, the outlet cited sources who alleged that production had, in the words of the magazine, “gone wildly, disgustingly off the rails.”
The show also faced criticism from the public and other publications.
Tesfaye said any response, even if negative, means the scene unfolded the way it was intended to.
“How ever you’re feeling watching that scene, whether it’s discomfort, or you feel gross, or you feel embarrassed for the characters, it’s all those emotions adding up to: This guy is in way over his head, this situation is one where he is not supposed to be here,” he said.
Until Aug. 28, it had been unclear what the show’s future at HBO would be.
Variety reports that star Moses Sumney said that he signed on thinking it was a limited series, while star Da’Vine Joy Randolph told the outlet that she thought “everyone’s intention (was) to have a second season.”
According to HBO, despite all the controversy, the series also ranked among Max’s most-watched this summer.