Fringe‘s uncertain future was a hot topic Sunday at the Television Critics Association press tour, with both the president of Fox and executive producer J.J. Abrams weighing in on what is and what might need to be.
But when TVLine spoke with EPs Jeff Pinkner and J.H. Wyman earlier this week — after screening the show’s winter premiere (airing Friday, Jan. 13) — they shared their exit plan (or absence of one) should this turn out to be the final season.
“The answer to that question is the same every year,” Pinkner started when asked if and when they’d need a heads up to wrap things up. “Worst case scenario, if this were the last aired season of Fringe — and as we’ve said before, there are other outlets where we could continue our stories, be they graphic novels or webisodes — we know what the end of this season is going to be, and it can function as a series finale.”
Pinkner said that last season’s capper likewise could have served as an apropos out for the sci-fi saga. “Had Peter, the lynchpin for the reason the show existed, been the one to sacrifice himself heroically to save the two universes and the woman he loved, it would have been a very authentic end.”
Fox president Kevin Reilly, when fielding questions about Fringe‘s fate, said the show has been a “point of pride” for him, as boss of a network that famously has let down genre-TV fans. Alas, Fringe is “an expensive show” that is not yielding a profit, he noted, “and we’re not in the business of losing money.”
Reilly said that conversations with Fringe‘s creative team and production studios have yet to take place. But Abrams, for one, says he’s “crossing [his] fingers” that the story of Peter, Olivia, Walter et al “gets to continue — and if not on Fox, maybe somewhere else.” (With reporting by Vlada Gelman)