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Netflix and Showtime Basically Traded ‘Uncoupled’ and ‘Ripley’ Today

Neil Patrick Harris' "Uncoupled" will move to Showtime for Season 2, while "Ripley" will premiere on Netflix.

Neil Patrick Harris in "Uncoupled," Andrew Scott

Neil Patrick Harris in “Uncoupled,” Andrew Scott

Barbara Nitke/Netflix/Emma McIntyre/WireImage

In the type of trade you’d expect see in the NFL, Netflix and Showtime performed an unexpected show swap this Friday. Netflix’s “Uncoupled” has been picked up from cancellation by Showtime and will return for Season 2 at the channel, while Showtime’s unaired “Ripley” will now premiere on Netflix.

Now, Netflix and Showtime didn’t literally trade the shows for each other, but negotiations for the placement of both shows were apparently occurring parallel to each other, with news happening to break on the same day. “Ripley,” which was first ordered to series in September 2019 and stars Andrew Scott, has reportedly begun post-production on its eight-episode season. “Uncoupled” starring Neil Patrick Harris premiered its first season last July, and was canceled by Netflix last month.

Sources at Netflix confirmed to IndieWire that “Ripley” will premiere on the streamer. Sources at Showtime confirmed to IndieWire that “Uncoupled” has been picked up at the network.

The switch-up comes as Showtime is preparing a major shift in strategy, as part of its pending rebranding as “Paramount+ with Showtime.” The upcoming merger with its sister streamer has lead the channel’s boss Chris McCarthy to announce a new approach to the channel, focusing more on existing franchises such as “Billions” and Dexter” and letting go of upcoming original shows like “Three Women.”

“Ripley” is based on author Patricia Highsmith’s series of novels featuring the character of Tom Ripley, a con artist and serial killer. The character was previously played by Alain Delon in 1960’s “Purple Noon” and by Matt Damon in 1999’s “The Talented Mr. Ripley.” Scott will star as the character in “Ripley,” which also features Dakota Fanning and Johnny Flynn.

Steven Zaillian wrote and directed the entire first season of “Ripley,” and executive produces with Garrett Basch, Guymon Casady, Ben Forkner, Sharon Levy, and Philipp Keel. The show is a co-production of Showtime and Endemol Shine North America in association with Entertainment 360 and Filmrights.

“Uncoupled” stars Harris as Michael, a New York City real estate broker who begins exploring the modern world of gay dating after his longtime partner ends their relationship abruptly. Tisha Campbell, Brooks Ashmanskas, Tuc Watkins, Emerson Brooks, and Marcia Gay Harden also star in the series, which was created by “Emily in Paris” and “Sex and the City” creator Darren Star and “Modern Family” writer Jeffrey Richman. Star, Richman, Harris, and Lilly Burns executive produce the series, which is a co-production of MTV Entertainment Studios, Darren Star Productions, Jeffrey Richman Productions, and Jax Media.

Deadline was the first to report on Showtime’s pickup of “Uncoupled.”

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