After a rocky second season, the creator of Revenge is leaving the ABC series. Writer-producer Mike Kelley will exit the show, a network source confirmed.
Revenge doesn’t yet have a third-season order, but the soap is considered very likely to return.
“In a difficult mutual decision between myself and ABC studios, the end of my current contract will mark my final season as showrunner for Revenge,” Kelley wrote in a statement. “Helming this series has been the ride of a lifetime, and my producing partner, Melissa Loy, and I will look back on our Revenge time with deep gratitude and respect for Emily [VanCamp] and Madeleine [Stowe] and the rest of the incredible cast, our heroic crew, the dedicated and imaginative producing and writing team, and the tireless post production department … I’m excited about finishing post production on the season two finale, which I hope will stand among the best episodes of the series thus far. Continued success to all.”
Deadline reported that Kelley had been lobbying the network and ABC Studios for shorter seasons, more like a cable-network 13-episode model that broadcasters are increasingly attempting with shows like Fox’s The Following and CBS’ upcoming Under the Dome. We’ve pushed for more shows to try this in the past — for heavily serialized dramas, doing 22 epiosdes a season is creatively extremely tough to pull off.