'Kennedys' miniseries pulled from History Channel
January 10th, 2011
09:50 AM ET

'Kennedys' miniseries pulled from History Channel

There'll never be another Camelot — at least as far as the History Channel is concerned.

The A&E Television network tells CNN it has canceled plans to air the eight-part miniseries "The Kennedys" on the cable channel this spring.

"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," an AETN rep said in a statement. "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 Kennedys" explores the relationship between John F. Kennedy (Greg Kinnear), his brother Robert Kennedy (Barry Pepper), and their father Joe (Tom Wilkinson). Katie Holmes, who plays Jacqueline Kennedy, recently gushed about the film to Elle magazine.

"On set there was this feeling that we had to create something very special, because these people were very special," Holmes, 32, says in the magazine's February issue. “[The Kennedys] were like movie stars. There was such a professionalism to their public image.”

"The Kennedys" will still air in Canada in March and be broadcast internationally, and it is still being shopped around to U.S. pay-cable channels. The Hollywood Reporter says Showtime is currently considering the film.

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soundoff (98 Responses)
  1. Jim

    And they couldn't have figured it out by reading the screenplay? Or can't the programming directors at the History Channel read?

    February 2, 2011 at 8:25 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Joy

    Too much with the Kennedys! Ted K. left that girl to die in 11 inches of water!!! Joe K. was a criminal. He made his spirited daughter get a lobotomy. He was a monster. JFK is held up to be a role model but nobody talks about the women he sneaked into the White House. Bill Clinton was crucified for one... They are an ambitious family, and JFK was a war hero. But lets no make them gods, please. I do believe they were responsible for MM's death.
    I thought Katie Holmes was a good choice for Jackie.

    January 16, 2011 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Shorty

    Well i guess MONEY can buy anything if it can keep the (Kennedys Mini Series) from airing, what are they hiding, why would some body BLOCK it ??? History Channel should show it anyway and not be PUSHED into anything ? What about all the hard work everybody put into this mini series ? I guess the "FAMILY" don't care who they set back !

    January 13, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Kelt

    Really? I couldn't have cared less about seeing it – until NOW. What is it that the K girls are so determined we Americans viewers not see?

    January 12, 2011 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  5. RobbyT

    Pawn Stars may not be a conventional history show, but every item brought in usually has a lengthy historical background that is discussed and analyzed. The Pickers show too for that matter. Those shows are certainly more interesting and informative about history than the moronic shows about UFO's, 2012, and the most fictional of all, religion.

    January 12, 2011 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Marin

    If you want to see truly worthless – just look in the mirror

    January 11, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Worthless

    The Kennedy's are worthless, good news not many of them are left....

    January 11, 2011 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
  8. IB-Chicago

    I had a friend come to work here from England. He had two observations about Americans: 1) Too many tv shows and books about money and 2) a crazy obsession with the Kennedys.

    January 11, 2011 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
    • SheWoman

      This from someone from England? The country that is falling all over itself because a member of their 'royalty' is getting married? What a joke!

      January 11, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Joe Deen

    Let me see if I have this correct, the History Channel won't air "The Kennedys" due to its being historical fiction but yet allow the village idiots from wrestling to put on their bogus show?

    January 11, 2011 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
  10. Leslie

    They need to do a tv miniseries of "the dark side of camelot"...enough of the bs about the Kennedy's...they were probably one of the most evil dynasties in us history...Read the book and you'll agree!!!

    January 11, 2011 at 9:39 am | Report abuse |
  11. Willie12345

    Must of been the need to have a R or X rating that killed the show.

    January 11, 2011 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
  12. Lance

    Wait, is this the same "History" channel that shows Ax Men, the prophecies of Nostradamus, all of the "Ancient Aliens" shows, and at least two series dedicated to Armageddon? Puh leeze. Sounds like historical fiction is exactly up their alley.

    January 11, 2011 at 9:11 am | Report abuse |
  13. Avon Barksdale

    Apparently this movie is very good and a little too accurate. Word on the street is that the kennedys did not like this movie one bit and Caroline put a stop to it.

    January 10, 2011 at 9:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marin

      word on the street............... ROTFLMAO – you're a classless idiot

      January 11, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Cosmotologist To The Stars

    makes me sick. im tired of them pulling good programs like this. but they shoulda had snooki play jackie o

    January 10, 2011 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
  15. HR

    I am SO glad that they are not going to be showing this!! I almost threw up with I read that Katie Holmes was going to be Jackie.... HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE CASTING!!!!

    January 10, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Jo

    I totally agree that the History Channel has gone the way of reality crap TV. However, we're supposed to forget history, as some of you suggest we do? How can one "Forget" the Kennedy's no matter their past. Do you not think Bush will go down in history? How about Nixon? I'd much rather hear about the Kennedy's. Frankly, I think they had much more of an impact on our society, better or worse. And if anyone has actually ever seen a few of Katie Holms movies, you'll see she's a far superior actor than one dimensional Tom Cruise.

    January 10, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Ed

    Ugh...enough about the Kennedys already.

    January 10, 2011 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • SheWoman

      Heard more than enough from you also – how do you like them apples?

      January 11, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
  18. mike

    The history channel needs to go back to showing history.Seriously,ice road truckers is on that channel?.

    January 10, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Mr X

    I would advise everyone to be very careful with what you say about the Kennedy's. I'm sure THE POWERS THAT BE at CNN are reading all of these negative comments about their beloved Kennedy's and taking notes. PROCEED WITH CAUTION.

    January 10, 2011 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  20. John David Oswald

    @ JJ, no im not related to Oswald (all of the people who are still alive and were related to Oswald changed their last name). JOHN is for John Wilkes Booth. DAVID is the middle name of Mark David Chapman – John Lennon's Killer. And OSWALD is Lee Harvey Oswald.

    January 10, 2011 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marin

      Figured you were a first class idiot – thanks for proving the point.

      January 11, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Really??

    I think they pulled it because they knew nobody is going to watch it. How many specials and made-for-tv movies do we have to watch about the Kennedys? I'm not saying they were bad people or anything like that, but can we move on? All these "specials" are doing is repeatig the same things we already know. Besides, Pawn Stars is more interesting anyway.

    January 10, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Vinsanity66

      You really think that nobody would watch this? It is a made for TV movie with real movie stars in the leads. It would definitely draw in a big crowd. It seems like there are likely political motivations for burying a show like this. If you can move it to a pay cable channel then you limit your audience.

      January 10, 2011 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Jude

    So, the History Channel will air crap like Brad Meltzer's Decoded – truly a work of imaginative fiction – but not this historical fiction piece? Strange.

    January 10, 2011 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Ginger

    Most television programming has become nothing more than mindless, stupid reality shows that are cheap to produce with no value or content. I have completely given up on TLC (Sarah and Kate!) Come on, HIstory Channel, give up something with content and interest. I'm turing off the tube until they step up

    January 10, 2011 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Richard

    If the Americans are so hard-up for royalty, why not just appoint a King and Queen instead of worshipping what was a deeply flawed group of people?

    January 10, 2011 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
  25. jjonahjameson

    boobs on the boobtube

    January 10, 2011 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
  26. mr . t

    I wonder if they're going to show Bobby and JFK screwing Marilyn Monroe, Ted driving his car off the bridge and letting the poor girl drown, and Joe Paying Jackie $1 million go stay with JFK because of his screwing around, and Joe bootlegging, and all of their deals with the mafia.

    January 10, 2011 at 12:43 pm | Report abuse |
  27. cavemanstyle

    I wonder if the gorgeous gal in the pic is single..? : )

    January 10, 2011 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Offof20

    Sounds like History is repeating itself; & no one likes to hear, "I told you so.". On a lighter note; Larry The Cable Guy has made the History Channel? HOW AWESOME IS THAT? 🙂

    January 10, 2011 at 12:36 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Name*Bryan

    Feed me.

    January 10, 2011 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  30. annmartina

    This seems like an oxymoron:

    "“[The Kennedys] were like movie stars. There was such a professionalism to their public image.”

    January 10, 2011 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Name*Dee

    Now I want to see it!

    January 10, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
  32. jjonahjameson

    dont crap up this blog

    January 10, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Latch

    LOL what's the REAL reason? TV is stuffed full of crap; to think that they aren't going to show it due to quality reasons is nonsense. Who called whom and threatened what?

    January 10, 2011 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
  34. palintwit

    A story about the Kennedys is pulled but yet America was subjected to that trailer trash Palin family ?

    January 10, 2011 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
  35. Sam

    I'm a lifetime member of the History channel, and can say it is dead to me. When they changed their name to simply "History" and dropped "The" and "Channel" I knew something would happen: no history, all reality dumb shows! Even the magazines it's all junk no more history on "History"!!!

    January 10, 2011 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
  36. Lisa

    They can't play this, but they can run all the other burning "history" shows like Ax Men and Pawn Stars? And Brad Meltzer's Decoded is a joke. I watched the one on the cornerstone of the White House being missing – they didn't reveal anything new. It was all a wild goose chase. History Channel started out well, but when they started showing stuff like Ax Men, I axed them.

    January 10, 2011 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
    • ConcernedNetizen

      Too true, Lisa.. If they don't like it, they'll FIND a way to quash it.

      January 10, 2011 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
  37. Shannon McFarlin

    This story leaves me wondering what the inaccuracies are that had the History Channel concerned. I'm also wondering why the History Channel approved the project in the first place. They had to have looked over the script initially for it to be approved and this project has been going on for quite some time. Just wonder what the backstory is here.

    January 10, 2011 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
    • hushupp

      We will probably never know, Shannon. Maybe they just realized it was dumb movie. But they will never admit THAT ! lol

      January 10, 2011 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  38. Marco555

    A&E patched it up nicely, but I think this is their way of saying, "you got it all wrong".

    January 10, 2011 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
  39. Jon

    Lemme get this straight. The Kennedy's mini-series isn't a fit with the History Channel brand, but Pawn Stars is? Come on, if you're not going to air it; at least be honest about why.

    January 10, 2011 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
  40. hushupp

    This is not news. I saw the announcement last week. I get tired of CNN keeping the same old headlines for at least a week. Less is more, CNN. Focus on fewer stories and do them well and accurately.

    January 10, 2011 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
  41. matt

    Well its good to see the republican party talking heads. What is wrong with you people the man def had his faults but you can not deny that he and the family done great things for this country. He would have done so much greater things had it not been for his untimely death. In my oppinion all the people of goverment are crooked and only care about the rich. Def not he little people who actually make america the greatest country going.I def hope that some network picks it up.

    January 10, 2011 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
  42. Tigger1215

    I am so relieved – the thought of Katie Holmes playing Jackie Kennedy makes my skin crawl. She is such a lightweight!! Marrying Tom Cruise didn't make her a better actress, but since she became his Mrs the acting offers seem to be coming along at a steady pace. I can't even remember the name of that "fluffy" teen series that made her a "name"!!! Make the show but with a different actress!!

    January 10, 2011 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
  43. roswell

    the most important show on history channel? are UFO's real? lol

    January 10, 2011 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
  44. Ernie

    If one whats "History"; turn off the tube and go to the library, then study your subject from several sources, not putting too much faith in political leaning histories from any source.

    January 10, 2011 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
  45. Avon Barksdale

    How could I forget Al Capone and anything that has to do with the mob. And speaking of the kennedys, guess what the History Chanel is showing today? AT 2 PM EASTERN STANDARD TIME – Rumrunners/Bootleggers: A history of illegal alcohol in America. (2002). IT'S 2 HOURS LONG!

    January 10, 2011 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
    • flyonthewall

      Capone and Kennedy were both in the mob one was Irish the other Italian......no difference.

      January 10, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  46. silverlion

    Just goes to show that America is getting fluffy in that we don't want to step on any toes. They were a corrupt family that the media portrays as the perfect family model. That they are royalty. Just proves that when you have vast amounts of money, you can buy the power necessary to be untouchable. Who cares about them anymore? Move on people.

    January 10, 2011 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Sunshine

      I agree. JFK did more damage than good and had plenty of corruption in his office. I would love to see the media report on his changes immigration policies and social security just to name a few.

      January 10, 2011 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
    • matt

      you guys need to go back to school and actually pay attention this time

      January 10, 2011 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
  47. Avon Barksdale

    Top 10 subjects on The History Channel: 1. WW2 2. Hitler 3. The Kennedys 4. WW2 5. Abraham Lincoln 6. JFK Assasination 7. The Civil War 8. Lee Harvey Oswald 9. WW2 10. September 11th

    January 10, 2011 at 10:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Lena

      You forget the alien apocalypse, Bible codes, and 2012 theories. They seem to play more of that than just about anything lately.

      January 10, 2011 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
    • chip

      Actually, it's more like 1. Ax Men 2. American Pickers 3. Pawn Stars 4. Top Gear .... You know, history-related stuff like that.

      January 10, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Clete

      You been watching this channel lately? Look at their prime-time line-up...Nothing but crap, Ax-men, Ice Road Truckers, Ancient Aliens, Monster quest and on and on and on. Someone needs to tell me why a series about the Kennedys (even if poorly done) is cancelled, but a series about two dimwits going to yard sales is shown over and over.

      January 10, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  48. jjonahjameson


    January 10, 2011 at 10:29 am | Report abuse |
  49. luckyray

    The kennedy family have been given more credit that necessary. Look at the number of DUI / ACCIDENTAL Deaths during the college years of these siblings. An Ordinary Citizen would have paid for these crimes , but the kennedys being kennedys went scot free.
    Incidentaly there was a history channel series a while ago, boot leggers and rum runners. A passing mentions was made to the kennedys father, who was a run runner from Canada and ill-gotten gains were used to launch this family.

    Let us do a trace of their ancestory and and see if this family deserves the velvet glove treatment the media is giving them. In America there are no royalty and all men / woman are equal.

    Alas , History is what is being written in the present , even if it is not the true potryal.

    January 10, 2011 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
    • Sam

      You are an ignorant tool.

      January 10, 2011 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • matt

      Totally agree with you sam

      January 10, 2011 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
    • flyonthewall

      Have to agree totally with you luckyray on this one. The Kennedy's had there place in history but all was not good. If you delve into the family and the reasons behind their notoriety the picture is not Camelot!

      January 10, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Vbogee

    @Stephanie- I agree! I can't remember the last time there was an actual history program on the channel.

    January 10, 2011 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  51. John David Oswald

    Good riddence. Maybe we can go two days without hearing the name kennedy.

    January 10, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
  52. nelson

    If I hear one more thing about the Kennedy's, I am going to PUKE. Who cares about any of them..........................

    January 10, 2011 at 10:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Sam

      You are a puke.

      January 10, 2011 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
    • About time

      I'm sick of the Kennedys as well. Let's relegate them to the footnotes of history where most of them belong.

      January 10, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      If you lived through the period of John's presidency and Robert's run for the presidency, you would understand their impact on society at that time. That impact has affected every presidency since. It's an important part of our history and their story as a family is important to understand.

      January 10, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marin

      Evidently a number of you are too stupid to turn the channel or not read the stories about the Kennedy family if you don't like it. That perfectly explains your moronic comments.

      January 11, 2011 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
  53. Stephanie

    Well, that's a shame. I was looking forward to the History Channel actually playing some history for a change, instead of all the crappy reality shows they play now.

    January 10, 2011 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
    • Josh

      THank you for saying it!!! The History channel has gone so commercial that they are all about entertainment instead of actual History. Pawn Stars, American Pickers, and the list goes on just makes me pass over the channel all together.

      January 10, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Clete

      I agree with you. The history channel has changed...and not for the better. Most of what they show in prime time anymore is just crap. Wait until February, Larry the cable guy is coming...Hurray.

      January 10, 2011 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
    • Mac

      Perhaps, they pulled it because it strayed significantly from historical accuracy. Either that, or it was too accurate and portrayed the Kennedys less favorably than is politically correct. Either way, it's their cable channel.

      January 10, 2011 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
    • MarkInDallas

      You can see dramatic readings of some of the ridiculous dialog and scenes that never happened in real life at this website:

      This was nothing but a hatchet job on the Kennedys to fulfill a political vendetta.

      January 10, 2011 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • itdontmatter

      The history channel used to be my favorite channel. It sucks so bad now. The kennedy movie(good or bad) will not damage their image

      January 11, 2011 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  54. Conrad Shull

    Too bad the theaters didn't apply the same ethics to O. Stone's "JFK".

    January 10, 2011 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |

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