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Without A Trace axed by CBS

Without A Trace

Story by Jack Foley

LONG-running missing persons drama Without A Trace has been axed by CBS, along with military drama The Unit and 11th Hour.

The US series, featuring Anthony LaPaglia and Poppy Montgomery, is the highest profile casuality in a slew of CBS shows that are being axed as part of cost-cutting measures.

It ran for 160 episodes, reached seven seasons and earned LaPaglia a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series in 2004. In addition, the show won a further two Emmys, including one for Charles S Dutton for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series, and was nominated a further three times.

Without A Trace focused on the cases of an FBI unit specializing in missing persons investigations and was produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. At its peak, it was one of the top-rated shows on US television and is shown in the UK on Channel 4.

Among the other casualties of the CBS cull were Rufus Sewell drama Eleventh Hour, axed after one season, and Dennis Haysbert drama The Unit, which was created by David Mamet. It had just concluded its fourth season.

However, in amongst announcing the shows that wouldn’t be returning, CBS did confirm that long-running dramas Cold Case and Numbers would be returning, along with comedies The New Adventures of Old Christine, Rules of Engagement and Gary Unmarried – several of which can be found on various satellite channels including Sky 1 in the UK.

In addition, CBS is close to securing a deal for the acquisition of NBC’s long-running drama Medium, which is produced by CBS TV Studios.

According to the Hollywood Reporter is poised to release the series within the next 24 hours (from May 20, 2009).

Among the surviving shows, Cold Case – which is a regular feature of the Sky 1 line-up – fought a hard battle to avoid the axe, with budget cuts a strong feature of its survival plan. It also revived in the ratings in May.

New CBS series include the dramas Three Rivers, The Good Wife and an NCIS spin-off, as well as Miami Trauma.