Fox’s “Utopia” has been suffering from internal strife, including executive clashes, amid worries that ratings will fail to justify the reality show's $50 million price tag, reports TheWrap.com.
“This discord has placed a cloud over ‘Utopia,’ the first big greenlight from Simon Andreae, the executive vice president of alternative entertainment who was brought in to replace unscripted chief Mike Darnell last fall,” the piece notes.
The project will place a group of ordinary people in an isolated, undeveloped location, where they will create their own civilization.
“Fox intends to shoot the contenders around the clock in this ambitious production, live-streaming it online as well as possibly airing multiple episodes during the week," the story reports. "The hope, insiders say, is that ‘Utopia’ may be the ratings juggernaut Fox has been looking for to replace the failed ‘X Factor’ and the waning ‘American Idol.'"
One executive told TheWrap that the price tag for the project is “on the very high end of staggering.”
The costs are leading to friction between Andreae and David Hill, News Corp.’s live sporting event czar, the story adds. Hill is reportedly concerned the show may end up being an expensive embarrassment.
Fox declined to comment.