We’re entering the month of March now, which is of course the time when many major networks start to properly determine what the future of some of their shows are going to. While we don’t expect every renewal to come out over the next several weeks, we are anticipated many. Manifest is one of those shows.
Why hasn’t the renewal happened yet? That is a subject that we’ve already covered in other forms, and there are a number of different reasons for it including there not being an immediate rush to make it happen and also the discussions between the network and the studio. NBC doesn’t have full ownership of Manifest and that does add to the delay. We remain every bit as confident in the renewal as we’ve always been; while we recognize that the live ratings were down at the end of the season versus where they were at the start, they still justify the renewal. That is without even mentioning the show’s impressive DVR numbers and the fantastic streaming possibilities that are out there.
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What we do want to discuss further now are some of the possible renewal scenarios and the likelihood that Manifest falls into each one of them. These scenarios are based mostly on some of what we’ve seen transpire with other shows over the years.
Scenario #1 – Manifest gets renewed in March/April. We’d say there is an 80% chance of this happening. Given the show’s performance, it benefits NBC to issue the renewal as soon as humanly possible. this instills confidence in the show and may encourage some new viewers to go find it and start binge-watching. We know that there is a contingent of people out there these days who don’t want to get started watching a show (especially a serialized drama) not know as to whether or not it is going to come back.
Scenario #2 – Manifest gets renewed by upfronts in May. We’d say that there’s about a 19% chance of this. Sometimes, networks do wait to the last minute for whatever reason to issue renewals for some of their shows. It’s certainly a little bit frustrating, but that is something that happens from time to time. It could happen in this case just because there are some finer details that need to be sorted out and maybe NBC puts some of their negotiation power elsewhere for a little while.
Scenario #3 – Manifest gets renewed by upfronts, or in early June. This is highly unlikely, think about a 1% chance. This only happens in extremely cases, sometimes when a network makes a mistake or there’s a snag in negotiations. It’s eventually dangerous just because you don’t want to run the risk of cast contracts eventually expiring.
So what are the chances of Manifest getting canceled?
At the moment, they really feel close to zero — even if NBC did decide to move on, we feel reasonably confident another network would pick it up. This, at least at the moment, feels almost as extreme as the show not getting that official green light by May sweeps.
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