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David Lynch leaves Twin Peaks revival series

twin peaks david lynch showtime
Twin Peaks may be returning to television, but series co-creator David Lynch isn’t coming with it.

Six months after Showtime confirmed plans to bring back the cult-classic series with co-creators Lynch and Mark Frost as writers and with Lynch directing the nine-episode season, the celebrated filmmaker has announced his abrupt departure from the project.

After rumors of the series’ being canceled began to circulate over the weekend, Lynch took to his social media accounts to clarify the situation and confirm his exit, and also indicated that the project might still move forward without his involvement.

Dear Twitter Friends, Showtime did not pull the plug on Twin Peaks.

— David Lynch (@DAVID_LYNCH) April 5, 2015

After 1 year and 4 months of negotiations, I left because not enough money was offered to do the script the way I felt it needed to be done.

— David Lynch (@DAVID_LYNCH) April 5, 2015

This weekend I started to call actors to let them know I would not be directing. Twin Peaks may still be very much alive at Showtime.

— David Lynch (@DAVID_LYNCH) April 5, 2015

I love the world of Twin Peaks and wish things could have worked out differently.

— David Lynch (@DAVID_LYNCH) April 5, 2015

Lynch indicated he was leaving because he felt sufficient money was not offered to ensure proper script development, as he explained in a series of updates posted on Twitter.

Originally scheduled to premiere on Showtime in 2016, the Twin Peaks revival effort had already confirmed the return of franchise star Kyle MacLachlan as F.B.I. Agent Dale Cooper, and various reports suggested that Lynch and Foster’s scripts for the nine-episode series had already been completed before Lynch announced his departure. Given all of that, there’s reason to believe the show could indeed go on — but would fans want a Lynch-less Twin Peaks?

The original Twin Peaks series aired for two seasons in the early ’90s and explored the weird, seedy — and occasionally supernatural — underbelly of a small logging town in Washington after the murder of the former homecoming queen invited the attention of a quirky F.B.I. investigator. Lynch’s signature cinematic style and the mystery of “Who killed Laura Palmer?” soon captivated audiences, but ratings declined as the mystery was drawn out beyond the first season and into the second, leading to the series’ cancellation after the second season’s finale. A subsequent feature-length film directed by Lynch, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, served as both an epilogue and prequel to the series.

Showtime responded to the announcement of Lynch’s departure from the series with the following statement:

We were saddened to read David Lynch’s statement today since we believed we were working towards solutions with David and his reps on the few remaining deal points. Showtime also loves the world of Twin Peaks and we continue to hold out hope that we can bring it back in all its glory with both of its extraordinary creators, David Lynch and Mark Frost, at its helm.

Given the final line of the network’s statement, it appears that there is still at least some hope for Lynch to act as the lynchpin for the Twin Peaks revival, but fans may want to brace themselves — and possibly learn to embrace — the notion of a return to the town of Twin Peaks with a slightly different perspective on the strange events that always seem to happen there.

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