‘Rise’ Axed By NBC, Damon J. Gillespie & Auli’i Cravalho React To Heartbreaking Cancellation After One Season

Stars of the NBC drama react to the network’s stunning cancellation days before ‘Opening Night.’

Rise NBC Cancelation
Eric Liebowitz / NBC

Stars of the NBC drama react to the network’s stunning cancellation days before ‘Opening Night.’

Rise, Jason Katim’s highly-anticipated NBC musical drama, has fallen after just 10 episodes. The network has canceled the show about a high school theater program amid low ratings, according to Deadline.

The mid-season replacement, helmed by the creator of Friday Night Lights and Parenthood, was one of the most promising new shows of the spring season. After a hopeful premiere following the This Is Us finale in March, ratings for Rise steadily declined over its 10-week run. Starring Josh Radnor as a high school teacher with a “vision” and Rosie Perez as his drama department assistant, Rise featured a supersized young cast that included Damon J. Gillespie and Auli’I Cravalho.

Rise creator Jason Katims has not yet issued a statement about the show’s cancellation, but many of the cast members took to social media to mourn the demise of the short-lived series. Damon J. Gillespie, who plays high school quarterback turned theater star Robbie Thorne on Rise, posted to Twitter to tell fans he is “speechless” over the cancellation.

“I want to say some words about gratitude and about the future but this one stings. A lot. Gonna take a couple of days off social media for a bit. Coming back when I the words reach me. Lots of love,” the Rise star wrote.

In addition, Auli’I Cravalho, who plays theater student Lillette Suarez on the show, posted a video to thank fans for their support of Rise. The actress encouraged fans to find their voice and their own “sacred troupe.”

Other Rise stars, including Amy Forsyth (Gwen Strickland on the show) and Mark Tallman (Detrell Thorne), posted lengthy messages to fans. You can see the tweets from the Rise cast below.

In happier times, Jason Katims talked about his trilogy of NBC dramas, saying “the DNA is similar” in Friday Night Lights, Parenthood, and Rise. But, unfortunately, the ratings weren’t.

There’s a moment you know……..you’re fricked. #Rise

A post shared by Rise (@nbcrise) on

In an interview with TV Guide, Katims admitted times have rapidly changed in the TV landscape.

“The viewers’ relationship to TV shows has just fundamentally changed, where now it’s more like going to a library and getting a book,” the Rise creator said. “There’s just so much to choose from and it’s impossible to keep up. Even shows that you like, you can’t keep up with them. So, you have to be selective and choose.”

You can see a promo for the Rise finale below.

The Rise finale, titled “Opening Night,” airs Tuesday, May 15, at 9 p.m. ET on NBC.