At least they can sing.
Despite improving ratings and a ton of promotion, Columbia TriStar Television Distribution executives canceled syndicated strip Donny & Marie after two seasons. The talk show with the two Osmond siblings, which rival syndicators didn't think would get even a second season, will not be coming back for a third in the fall.
"It's really disappointing," says outgoing CTTD President Barry Thurston. "We put forth a really strong effort this year on the programming and promotion side, and the ratings were up this season, but they weren't up enough for us to continue this thing from an economic standpoint. This was not an inexpensive show to mount."
Donny & Marie actually averaged a 1.7 rating this season in the national ratings, an improvement from its first-season 1.5 average, according to Nielsen Media Research. But the talk show ranked 102 for the season among syndicated shows and didn't fare too well in a number of important markets, including New York.
FOX O & O WNYW-TV opted not to sign up for another season of the series after it posted a 0.8 rating/3 share during the just completed May sweeps. Other stations, including some owned by FOX, were also said to be opting out of a third season.