Canceled by ABC, ‘Nashville’ finds a new home at CMT

Connie Britton and Hayden Panettiere attend the “Nashville” panel at the Disney ABC Television Critics Assn. press tour at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. The series, canceled by ABC in May, is moving to CMT.
(Todd Williamson/Invision/Associated Press)

Good news, y’all. “Nashville” is back from the dead.

The country music soap starring Connie Britton and Hayden Panettiere will live on at CMT. All future episodes will be available to stream on Hulu the day after initial broadcast. As announced in March, the “thirtysomething” team of Ed Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz will serve as executive producers and show runners. No return date has been set.

The series was canceled last month by ABC, where it had aired for four seasons, sparking an outpouring of virtual grief from its relatively modest but passionate following.

“CMT heard the fans. The wave of love and appreciation they have unleashed for ‘Nashville’ has been overwhelming,” said Brian Philips, president of CMT, in a press statement. “We see our fans and ourselves in this show and we will treasure it like no other network. ‘Nashville’ belongs on CMT.”


The series follows the professional and personal drama in the lives of country music singers Rayna James (Britton) and Juliette Barnes (Panettiere).

When it premiered in 2012, “Nashville” was widely seen as one of TV’s most promising new shows, with critics falling for its “All About Eve”-style tale of competing female stars and use of original country tunes. The series was a strong performer on DVR and was popular with younger female viewers, but was never a huge same-day ratings draw, and its audience shrank over the course of four increasingly soapy seasons on ABC. 

When ABC, which is in the middle of a transition under newly appointed entertainment president Channing Dungey, pulled the plug in May, talk about a revival on another network began almost instantly. 

Rumors about a deal with CMT began to swirl in recent days, with some expecting an announcement at the CMT Awards on Wednesday night. The deal was brokered by CMT, Lionsgate, ABC Studios and Hulu. 



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Reba McEntire in ‘Nashville’ on ABC

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