LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- FOX has scrapped its plans for a fourth edition of its Paris Hilton/Nicole Richie-led reality series "The Simple Life."
The network cited its already bloated midseason slate as the chief reason for the decision.
"In January we have to accommodate two and a half hours of new programming with '24' and 'American Idol,'" FOX said in a statement to the press. "We also have completed episodes of both scripted and unscripted series in the wings. We're enjoying solid performances by our returning shows, and we've also already ordered full seasons of 'Prison Break,' 'Bones' and 'The War at Home.' Collectively, we did not see a place for 'The Simple Life' on our schedule this season."
The series, which comes from Bunim-Murray Productions and 20th Century Fox Television, had been set to return sometime next year.
Both companies however aren't giving up on the show: "We have a hit series starring two of the most written-about women in the world... (we're) confident this situation will be remedied quickly," Bunim-Murray chairman Jon Murray told Daily Variety.
"We're disappointed that 'The Simple Life' will not continue on Fox where it has performed so well, but we believe this series ... is still a dynamic and valuable franchise," added a 20th spokesperson. "We hope to be able to announce a new network partner in the coming days."
It's understood talks are underway with both NBC and the WB to find a new home for the series. Hilton and Richie had been under contract for a fourth season, however it's not clear how FOX's cancellation will affect their status.