Q: Do you know why "Away," the series with Hilary Swank, was canceled? I thought it was excellent — story and acting both.
A: The series about a journey to Mars had decent ratings for a streaming series, according to several reports. But they may not have been decent enough to justify the cost of the show — especially when, as one account noted, Netflix would have to commit to an entire season and figure out how to make it during the pandemic challenges still facing many shows. There may also have been some viewer fatigue with the concept; Alan Sepinwall noted that another streaming series, Hulu's "The First," also dealt with Mars travel — and it ended after one season, too. As I have mentioned here before, several series that might have survived in normal times were ended because of COVID-19 complications.
Q: How did Hallmark Channel make almost 40 holiday movies during the pandemic? The new movies began in late October. Were movies made prior to the March shutdown?
A: Hallmark has often demonstrated extraordinary efficiency when turning out holiday movies, perhaps the biggest draw for its channels. And this season has been no exception. One of the current movies was shot in January, before the pandemic became pervasive. Others, a spokesman said, "filmed summer into fall on an accelerated schedule due to the pandemic." But in case you think corners were being cut, the spokesman added, "There are COVID-19 protocols and precautions in place that allowed all filming and production to open."
'Blue Bloods' question
Q: Can you tell me where the house that Commissioner Frank Reagan lives in on "Blue Bloods" is located in real life?
A: The exteriors are a home in the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn. The interiors are a studio set. By the way, "Blue Bloods" has been renewed for another season, although the date for its return has not been set yet.
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