EXCLUSIVE: Showtime will not be picking up a second season of one-hour drama anthology series The First Lady. The star-studded Season 1 of the anthology, set in the East Wing of the White House and focused on telling the stories of America’s charismatic, complex and dynamic first ladies, centered on Eleanor Roosevelt (Gillian Anderson), Betty Ford (Michelle Pfeiffer)\ and Michelle Obama (Viola Davis), with Davis also serving as executive producer.
“Showtime can confirm that the anthology series The First Lady will not be moving forward with another season,” a spokesperson for the network said in a statement to Deadline. “We would like to applaud the artistry and commitment of our showrunner Cathy Schulman, director Susanne Bier, their fellow executive producers, our amazing cast — led by executive producer Viola Davis, Michelle Pfeiffer and Gillian Anderson — and our studio partner Lionsgate for their dedicated work in telling the unique stories of three remarkable leaders.
The First Lady, which received a lukewarm reception from critics, hailed from writer Aaron Cooley, Davis and Julius Tennon’s JuVee Productions; Cathy Schulman’s Welle Entertainment (Otherhood); and Jeff Gaspin’s Gaspin Media. Cooley executive produced along with Davis and Tennon via their JuVee Productions, Schulman via Welle Entertainment, Gaspin via Gaspin Media and Brad Kaplan via Link Entertainment. Susanne Bier was director/exec producer. Showtime and Lionsgate TV co-produced the series.
At TCA in February, Schulman and Bier shared that they were exploring potential future installments that they said could feature Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Hillary Clinton, Dolly Madison, Edith Wilson, Martha Washington, Rosalynn Carter or Melania Trump.