NYPD Blue: ABC's Revival Pilot Failed Because 'The Bar Was So High'

NYPD Blue Revival

ABC’s NYPD Blue revival did not make it onto the network’s fall schedule — and now we know why.

“The main problem was that the bar was so high,” ABC’s entertainment president, Karey Burke tells TVLine of the “heartbreaking” decision to pass on the pilot. “It was a very good pilot. On any other network, in any other circumstance, that show [likely] gets on the air. For us, we kept the bar really high. We all felt like unless we can really advance the ball from the original let’s let the original rest. They did as good a job as one can do with something that is that revered.”

Earlier reports suggested ABC would reshoot the pilot with an eye towards a possible slot in the Alphabet network’s midseason slate. Burke is not completely ruling out that possibility. “I can’t say definitively, 100 percent that it won’t come back around,” she says. “Because it might come back around.”

A continuation of the groundbreaking, Emmy-winning 1993-2005 original series, the NYPD Blue revival starred British newcomer Fabien Frankel as Theo Sipowicz, son of Blue‘s iconic cop Andy Sipowicz, played by Dennis Franz. Theo is a “hard-drinking, hard-headed and quick-witted cop,” much like his old man, and is working towards becoming an NYPD detective… while also investigating his father’s murder.

Supernatural alum Alona Tal co-starred as Det. Nicole Lazarus, and Justified vet Rick Gomez played Detective Craig Pettibone, along with Kim Delaney and Bill Brochtrup, who reprised their respective roles as Diane Russell and John Irvin. Matt Olmstead and Nick Wootton, both of whom worked on the original NYPD Blue, were behind the revival, with Jesse Bochco (son of late franchise co-creator Steven Bochco) directing the pilot.