CBS Reportedly Cancels 'Bette'

ByABC News
March 6, 2001, 3:12 PM

March 6 -- CBS has dropped the curtain on Bette Midler's diva act.

Despite ordering a full season of the actress-singer's sitcom debut, Bette, in October, the eye network has apparently grown weary with the show's poor ratings. Though 18 of Bette's 22 episodes have already been filmed, Variety reports that the final four will not be shot by producer Columbia TriStar Television.

Instant Success, Then Quick Drop

Wednesday's broadcast will likely be the last for the Divine Miss M. Two episodes remain in the can, but it's not known whether CBS will green-light them for prime time.

Bette, which reportedly had the most expensive pilot in television history, bowed to absolutely fabulous numbers in October, winning nearly 16 million viewers making it the best comedy performance for CBS in more than five years.

But the sitcom lost steam and was down to 9 million viewers this month, Variety notes.

Bette's star was not doing much to help matters, having openly griped about the show's demanding shooting schedule. The diva had also lost her first TV husband, Kevin Dunn, in November; tabloids attributed his departure to Dunn and Midler's behind-the scenes bickering. He was replaced by Robert Hays, whose debut will be on the series finale.