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Gillian Anderson Won’t Return to American Gods for Season Two

The gods are indeed cruel

In an interview with The Los Angeles Times, Gillian Anderson revealed that she will not be returning to American Gods for season two. “Anderson says the departure of showrunners Bryan Fuller and Michael Green means she will not return to the show,” wrote the Times‘ Sarah Rodman.

As most TMSers will know, Anderson played the new god Media in the first season. Media incarnates as a variety of different pop-culture icons throughout the season, and Anderson handled each of them with ice-cold aplomb. From David Bowie to Marilyn Monroe to Judy Garland in Easter Parade, she was a glorious chameleon.

Kristin Chenoweth, who was almost deliriously typecast as the god Easter in Season One, also isn’t sure if she’ll return to the show. She said she was “devastated” to hear that Fuller and Green had left; she’d previously worked with Fuller on Pushing Daisies, and he was the one who brought her to American Gods in the first place. “When Bryan [Fuller] was the showrunner, I was coming back for several episodes, but I don’t know now,” she said back in December. “It depends on who it is and if they think I add value or not.”

Both Fuller and Green exited the show in November 2017, months after it had already been renewed for a second season. The two reportedly left over disagreements about “budget and creative direction.” Though the per-episode budget was already at around $10 million, Variety wrote that “Fuller and Green were said to have been pushing for an increase to the series’ budget for season two,” but producer Fremantle Media wouldn’t agree to it. Other sources say that the tension arose when Fremantle tried to decrease the budget from its expensive first season. Whatever the reason, more than half of the scripts for the second season had already been written at the time of their departure.

American Gods Season Two was originally set to premiere in mid-2018, but as the search for a new showrunner continues, it’s unclear whether they’ll hit that mark. Without Fuller and Green’s distinct voices, and without some of its key gods, it may shape up to be a very different show from the critically acclaimed first season. That’s a shame, as it really did feel like a perfect storm of talent, material, and timeliness. I was really excited for so many storylines this season, especially those for Bilquis and the other female characters, and it’ll suck if this all falls apart.

What exactly is going on with this show, STARZ?

(Via The Los Angeles Times and SYFY Wire; image: STARZ)

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