Noticing a trend here? Whereas we were at least able to figure out a few reasons why Universal would want to reunite the original cast of The Fast and the Furious, we've been wracking our brains trying to figure out what exactly it was that convinced ABC that the time was right to resurrect the failed 1998 rom-com Cupid. The first thing we checked was to see if Ben Silverman had made the leap from NBC to the American Broadcasting Company, but that wasn't it. And so we plugged away, eventually coming across an interview that the AP's David Bauder conducted with both Kim Rozenfeld, ABC's senior vice-president of current programming, and Rob Thomas, the show's creator. But now, after hearing the way these two bickered about the show before an ABC publicist cut the interview short (!), we're not really sure that even ABC knows why they're back in the Cupid business.
Although the AP typically (and understandably) treats its stories in a vanilla manner, we give huge props to David Bauder for pressing Thomas and Rozenfeld for details on their working relationship and how the show, which stars Bobby Cannavale and the delightful Sarah Paulson, would need to change to survive this time around. From the sound of things, there were definitely some tensions between the show's creatives and the network execs steering the program:
The first series "would have three-and-a-half page scenes of Trevor and Claire bickering," Rob Thomas said. "Now you never have that. I think there's a belief that people don't have the patience for that. I'm not sure I subscribe to that belief."
Rozenfeld said he disagreed with a conclusion that the series now emphasizes the romance of the week instead of the lead characters. "I think there is equal focus," he said.
Thomas declined to discuss whether creative differences with ABC executives were a major impediment in making the second Cupid. ABC cut short an interview with Rozenfeld before questions about its relationship with Thomas could be fully discussed.
Way to press 'em, Bauder! While none of this bodes well for the new series, we doubt that this behind-the-scenes squabbling will have any significant effect on people's desire to see the show. However, if you believe Rob Thomas, the bickering certainly had some effect on how the show turned out.
"All first-year shows, it's tough," Thomas said. "It's tough for everybody to get on the same page. But at the end of the year, I think we found a sweet spot."
Only one question remains: Will viewers be patient enough to stick it out through the first few awkward weeks to get to the episodes where the creative team finally found their "sweet spot"? We'll find out soon enough!