The news was first announced by Syfy’s Craig Engler via Twitter (first reported by Deadline.com). “Syfy will end its original action-adventure series Stargate Universe when the show returns with the final 10 episodes of its second season in the Spring of 2011,” Engler said. “The Stargate franchise — consisting of Stargate SG-1, Stargate Atlantis and Stargate Universe — has aired on Syfy since 2002.
“Syfy has a slate of new scripted projects lined up for 2011 including the series premiere of Being Human on January 17, the recently green lit one-hour drama series Alphas, and the much anticipated Battlestar prequel pilot movie, Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome. Warehouse 13, Eureka, and Haven will also return with new seasons next year.”
Stargate Universe premiered in the fall of 2009 with a larger cast and a very different style from the two previous incarnations of the long-running franchise. Series creators Brad Wright and Robert C. Cooper expressed a desire to do something different after producing over 300 hours of Stargate, and crafted a third installment for the franchise that was a gritty, more realistic character drama.
The series premiered in front of more than 2.3 million viewers in the U.S., but fell to less than 1.5 by the end of the first season. Syfy attempted to revitalize the viewer base with a move to Tuesdays — a successful night for its top-rated summer shows Eureka and Warehouse 13. The move ultimately proved unsuccessful, with SGU averaging less than 1.1 million viewers (Live + Same Day) so far this season.
SGU‘s Tuesday night lead-out companion, Caprica, was canceled in October after faring even worse in the 10 p.m. time slot.
The production team members have been focused on finishing Season Two and securing a third season, and so far haven’t publicly suggested any plans for a fourth Stargate television series. (Cooper departed Universe earlier this year.)
The 2011-2012 season will mark the first time in 14 years without new episodes of Stargate airing.
The final ten episodes of SGU will air in the spring, picking up where the mid-season finale left off, with “Deliverance.” The second season finale has already been filmed, and is expected to end on a cliffhanger.
(Thanks to Benjamin, Phil, Petroit, Tyler, Andrew, and Marie for the tip)