Issa Rae’s reality series Sweet Life: Los Angeles has been canceled by HBO Max, in keeping with the outlet’s recent cancellations of reality shows, especially those with diverse casts.
The series followed Black friends in their 20s and early 30s living their lives and striving for their dreams in Los Angeles. The series lasted for two seasons, with the second season premiering this year. The Jasmine Brand first reported the news, which was later confirmed by trade publications.
According to Variety, the series was the first to come from Rae’s overall deal with WarnerMedia, but the deal was made before David Zaslav came to the company. Now, under Zaslav’s leadership, WarnerMedia has been accused of racism and discrimination when it comes to which projects it seeks to axe, like Batgirl starring Leslie Grace and directed by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, and voguing reality competition Legendary, featuring mostly Brown and Black competitors and judging panel and based in the world of the ballroom scene, a staple in Black and Brown LGBTQ culture. Another reality series which was canceled, FBoy Island, was deemed, like Legendary, to be too expensive to produce under Zaslav’s new budget for the company.
Variety asserts that other reality series are about to receive the same fate since Zaslav has made it clear during his tenure that new unscripted reality series will not be a part of the HBO Max slate in the near future due to the merger with Discovery, which already has unscripted content. Even though currently-running reality series were said to be given a second look regarding possible renewal, it seems unlikely that many, if any, will be renewed.
As far as where Sweet Life: Los Angeles could go next, Rae released a TikTok alluding to the fact that she might be shopping the series elsewhere. In her Instagram stories, she responded to fans with the caption, “Me reading y’all comments telling me to ‘do something’ like I’m not.”
While Rae didn’t give any specifics, it seems like Sweet Life might have another chance on the small screen.