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Movies/TV

ABC cancels Pittsburgh-shot 'Downward Dog'; creators hope to find new home

| Monday, June 26, 2017, 12:54 p.m.
Ned the dog and Allison Tolman in a scene from ABC's 'Downward Dog.'
Ned the dog and Allison Tolman in a scene from ABC's 'Downward Dog.'

Despite steady ratings and solid reviews, ABC has canceled the new, Pittsburgh-shot comedy series "Downward Dog."

The show has aired six of its eight-episode first season, and will conclude with a two-part season/series finale at 8 p.m. June 27.

Co-creators Samm Hodges and Michael Killen stressed in a message on Twitter that the reasons for the cancellation were strictly financial and that they are "committed to finding a new home."

"Got the very surprising news today that ABC is not moving forward with Downward Dog," Hodges wrote. "They loved it creatively and really wanted to make more but couldn't find a financial path to do so."

ABC was faced with making a renewal decision on "Downward Dog," as the options on the cast were about to expire, according to Deadline.com.

After a better-than-expected debut on Wednesday, the quirky single-camera comedy starring Allison Tolman was sent to Tuesdays where it airs with no support as the sole original on the night against the biggest series of the summer, NBC's "America's Got Talent."

"Downward Dog" also has been getting traction on social media, according to the post by Hodges and Killen.

The show was the first broadcast comedy series to premiere at the Sundance Film Festival. It is based on a webisode created by Pittsburgh residents Hodges and Killen of the local video production service Animal.

Martin, the title character, is a somewhat neurotic dog — his thoughts voiced by Hodges — and his relationship with his owner, Nan (Tolman).

"The stories really are focused on Martin and a lot of the time he gets the best lines," Tolman said told the Trib when the show was shooting here last fall. "He is easily the most endearing and funniest character. So yeah, there is a bit of competitiveness."

The cast and crew shot episodes at district landmarks including Page's Dairy Mart on the South Side, Wigle Whiskey in the Strip District and a home near Chatham University's campus in Squirrel Hill.

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