History Channel Vetoes ‘The Kennedys’
First Published: January 8, 2011 3:03 PM EST Credit: Getty Premium
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- The History Channel has canceled plans to air “The Kennedys,” a highly anticipated miniseries about the famous political family that stars Katie Holmes and Greg Kinnear.
“Upon completion of the production of ‘The Kennedys,’ History has decided not to air the eight-part miniseries on the network,” the network told Access in a statement on Friday. “While the film is produced and acted with the highest quality, after viewing the final product in its totality, we have concluded this dramatic interpretation is not a fit for the History brand.
“We recognize historical fiction is an important medium for storytelling and commend all the hard work and passion that has gone into the making of the series, but ultimately deem this as the right programming decision for our network,” the statement continued.
A source close to the project tells Access that American viewers may still get a chance to see the miniseries, saying, “Hopefully it will be sold to another cable network soon so it will air in the States.”
An early version of the miniseries’ script — originally slated for broadcast in the spring with Holmes playing Jaqueline Kennedy and Kinnear as JFK — had reportedly come under fire from Kennedy historians.
Changes were made to the script and the project was eventually approved by network historians.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, which was first to report the cancellation news, though no advertisers had registered “complaints or concerns” regarding “The Kennedys,” the content was not considered “historically accurate enough for the network’s rigorous standards.”
The miniseries is still scheduled to air on March 6 in Canada and will also be broadcast internationally, according to THR.
As previously reported on AccessHollywood.com, the politcal project was somewhat of a dream come true for Holmes, who has admitted she has a great admiration for the late Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis — especially the way the First Lady raised her children.
“She was an amazing mother and she was a very strong woman,” the actress told Access Hollywood at the junket for “The Romantics” in Septmeber. “She did a lot right.”
Holmes spent weeks in Jackie O-styled suits and pillbox hats alongside Kinnear and Tom Wilkinson (who plays Joe Kennedy Sr.).
While the clothes are easy to put on, taking on the role of the former First Lady is something Holmes said she found intimidating.
“It’s been amazing and a little overwhelming because she is such an icon and so important to our country and so many people have fun memories of her,” she said. “In doing the research, I learned so much about her and my adoration for her only grew, so it’s been really fun. It’s always great to play a character that you love.”
A rep for Katie had no comment regarding the cancellation when contacted by Access on Friday.
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