Exclusive Q&A: CW President Dawn Ostroff on the Future of SMALLVILLE and SUPERNATURAL


Hold onto your hats SUPERNATURAL and SMALLVILLE fans, because from now until May, it’s going to be one helluva bumpy ride. And by that we mean, while Sam, Dean, Clark and Lois busy themselves with that whole pesky business of saving the world from evildoers on a weekly basis, far more sinister villains in the form of network executives (Yup, still bitter about EVERWOOD’s cancellation!) are busy plotting the real future of some of your favorite small screen heroes. Is this season truly the end of the road for SUPERNATURAL and SMALLVILLE? We cornered CW head honcho Dawn Ostroff at yesterday’s Television Critics Press Tour in Pasadena to find out.

Is this going to be the last season of SUPERNATURAL
Dawn Ostroff: I had lunch with Eric [Kripke] and I think he’s still really enthusiastic and excited. Creatively I think it’s the best season they’ve had to date and it’s been a great companion piece this year with THE VAMPIRE DIARIES. Again, we still have along way until we make a decision, but we’ve been very happy with what we’ve seen and I think Eric remains excited about the show and feels enthusiastic about being involved.

Enthusiastic enough to stick around for another season considering from the beginning he’s gone on record as stating that his SUPERNATURAL story arc is five seasons?
It’s funny. I think a lot of writers, actors and producers feel that way when they’re starting off or when they’re in the thick of season three, really tired, at the end of twenty-two episodes and can’t wait for a break. But then when the end is upon them, I think everybody kind of reconsiders. I think that what Eric enjoys about the show is that they [the writers] come up with these ideas that are really out there — my personal favorite being the one where the boys were trapped in TV land — and we encourage them to jump in and go for it. I think it’s made for a really good partnership where they don’t feel stifled creatively and so it’s really worked.

When do you think a decision will be made about a 10th season for SMALLVILLE?
It’s too soon to know. Creatively we’ve been happy with the show and the ratings, men 18-34 have improved greatly. That said, SMALLVILLE is a show where a decision probably won’t come down until May.

Does that mean the writers will be treating the season finale like a series finale, just in case SMALLVILLE doesn’t get picked up?
Typically in this situation we try and make the ending satisfying just in case. But we haven’t gotten to that point with the producers where we are plotting out the end of the season just yet.

  • Jess

    I hate her!

  • mel

    If Kripke wants to continue I’m definitely gonna keep watching.

  • Mel

    She must be negotiating with EK and the Smallville guys — because –please — the CW schedule is a shambles. She can’t cancel SN and/or SV unless she has something to air in their place and until the rest of the schedule is fixed, that ain’t happening yet . . . . .

  • TVFan

    I for one would love to see Kripke stick to his original 5 year vision. Too many shows (X-FILES for example) were ruined by greedy networks wishing to milk the show for more money.

  • Nick

    CW can’t afford to cut loose either of these high-quality shows and be left with a schedule of struggling soaps.

    It’s wonderful that Vampire Diaries and Life Unexpected seem to be tentpoles the net can build around. But they really need to break in at least two good new series each season, since so many current series are aging. One more year of finding two hits would really help shore up the schedule.

    But please, Dawn, look at what’s been WORKING….thriller genres (VD, SN & SV) where the plot is constantly moving, not stagnant like Mon. & Tue. dramas. And Life Unexpected should encourage you to find other offbeat family concepts. People will watch, if the story and actors are great.

  • Ace

    Well said, Nick. The CW does seem to do the thriller genre better than the soaps. But they are still targeting a young audience, so they need to make those soaps. They just need to make them better. I still watch GG but it really hasn’t been very good this year. And I hope that Life UnExpected will fill the “feel good show” hole that was left from Gilmore Girls and (more recently) Privileged.

  • ewanspotter

    Go away, Dawn.

  • Nada Nuff

    She used a lot of words to not really tell us anything. “Both shows might be renewed, we’ll decide later” would have sufficed.

  • kayvee

    I hope Kripke makes her beg and beg hard before signing on for season 6. I think he needs a bigger music budget. /