News has surfaced that the OWN network has moved to cancel love drama Love Is after one season after domestic violence allegations surfaced regarding show co-creator Salim Akil. The show, which also names Akil’s wife and show partner Mara Brock Akil as a producer and creator, was just renewed for a second season this past summer.
“OWN has decided not to move forward with the second season of Love Is _ ,” the Oprah Winfrey founded outlet said Wednesday, almost five months after initially announcing this summer that the Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil produced series was renewed. “The TV memoir was inspired by the real-life love story of married producers Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil,” OWN added in a telling insight into the decision to pull the Love plug.
The show may be over, but cast and producers were all paid for the second season under contractual obligations, I’ve learned.
The cancellation follows the completion of an inquiry by producer WBTV on both Love Is _ and the CW series Black Lightning. Salim Akil is the showrunner on the latter and both Akils serve as executive producers on both shows. While there have been no allegations of misconduct by Salim Akil on either show and none were found as a result of the inquiries, the studio made the move on November 30 after the abuse case from actor Amber Dixon Brenner in Los Angeles Superior Court became public knowledge.
While Black Lightning remains in production with Akil as showrunner, the feeling at OWN is that the premise of Love Is_ has been fundamentally altered amidst the claims in federal and state court against Salim Akil, we’ve heard. “The narrative has changed,” noted one source about the dramedy that centers on a couple finding true love, family and success together in Hollywood.
Mara Brock Akil addressed Love Is getting canceled via her Instagram page.
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LOVE IS___ I am saddened that this great group of #artists and #storytellers will no longer get to create together on this project in this way. This was a special tribe— assembling teams like this is by the grace of God— and I will miss not being on set with them to make more magic. And though I know we will all go on to create more amazing work, I’m grateful there was a moment in time that we came together and had the courage to give our best to try and tell a story about love with love. #InTheLandOf #LoveIs
Her husband has not made any public comments just yet.