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The Following, SHIELD spinoff status update

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UPDATE: Both titles officially received bad news late Friday. The Agents of SHIELD spinoff is not happening at ABC “at this time.” And The Following is searching for a new home beyond Fox. 

There are dead shows, and then, like in The Princess Bride, there are shows that are “mostly dead.” 

As networks make a flurry of decisions in preparation for their upfront presentation to advertisers in New York City next week, there are a few big titles whose fates have been heavily rumored during the last 24 hours—yet still are not officially decided. 

The first is Fox’s The Following, which is not yet confirmed dead by the network. In fact, Fox isn’t confirming the fates of any of its bubble shows until its fall schedule is annonced next week. But things are not looking good for a fourth season of Kevin Bacon’s serial killer thriller. We’re told studio Warner Bros. is ready to search for a new home for the series. While there have been rumors that Hulu—which streams previous episodes of The Following and is also considering rescuing Fox’s The Mindy Project—is a candidate, we’re told the streaming outlet is unlikely to rescue the dark drama. 

With Stalker’s chances of renewal looking slim over on CBS, The Following’s cancellation would mean that EP Kevin Williamson wouldn’t have a show of his own on the air next season—he’s an executive producer on The Vampire Diaries, but that show really now belongs to Julie Plec and Caroline Dries.

The Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. spinoff, which is in development and was to star Adrianne Palicki and Nick Blood, is rumored to be decased as well. Perhaps that renewal of Agent Carter meant S.H.I.E.L.D. not landing a second venture? Or maybe it was the backlash from vocal fans, who expressed that losing two of the best new characters on the flagship would be a mistake? ABC will not address the spinoff, while Marvel says it has not yet been informed of ABC’s verdict either way. Since the project is a spinoff of an ABC series, it seems very unlikely that Marvel could find another home for this Mockingbird-centered story if ABC indeed gives the spinoff a thumbs down. 

Obviously there are many regular bubble shows that are still awaiting a verdict, too—with the exception of a series order for Supergirl, CBS has been dead silent. But we’re in the thick of a frantic period of TV broadcasters making big decisions, so expect more series orders today—and some verdicts on existing shows, as well.

Follow @jameshibberd and @natalieabrams for up-to-the-minute details.