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Damon Lindelof Wishes Lost Ended After 4 Seasons

"ABC just didn't want to engage in that conversation."
  • Elizabeth Mitchell, Matthew Fox, Ken Leung, Evangeline Lilly, Naveen Andrews, and Jeremy Davies in Lost (Photo: Everett Collection)
    Elizabeth Mitchell, Matthew Fox, Ken Leung, Evangeline Lilly, Naveen Andrews, and Jeremy Davies in Lost (Photo: Everett Collection)

    ABC's Lost ran for six seasons between 2004 and 2010, but Damon Lindelof, who created the series with J.J. Abrams and Jeffrey Lieber, reveals he wishes show had ended after four seasons.

    During an interview with the podcast "Into It," Lindelof said ABC originally wanted the show to run for 10 or more seasons and explained the production team struggled with setting boundaries, a task he described as one that "seemed impossible at the time."

    According to Lindelof, the network was concerned about Lost's ability to maintain momentum after the cinematic and expansive pilot episode.

    "And my response to that always was like, 'You are right. So let's design a finite beginning, middle, and end,'" he recalled. "ABC just didn’t want to engage in that conversation."

    "At the time that they picked up the show, they said, 'Make 13 of these, and let's see how it goes,'" Lindelof continued. "It was such a ratings hit that it became clear to me instantly that all conversations about ending the show would be over. I said, 'Hey, guys, we can't keep this up forever,' and that's when ABC said, 'Oh, we were thinking more like ten seasons.' The compromise ended up being six, but I personally wish that we could have done it in four."

    The Lost boss added that he appreciates creators' newfound ability to set expectations for a limited number of seasons, even if it isn't what fans want. "People don't want things to end. I do," he said.

    Lindelof also feels you can have too much of a good thing, and he cited Marvel projects as an example of this kind of content glut.

    "If you make a couple of great Marvel movies, the instinct is, 'We need to make more Marvel movies, and we need to expand this,'" he said. "And I have this sort of interior feeling of like, 'Wow, I wish they made less because it would make each one that came out a little bit more special.'"

    As for the mixed reactions Lost got from its fanbase following the controversial series finale, Lindelof knows that just comes with the territory of making such a successful show.

    "I will just say, having experienced the intensity of the fandom, for all of the wonder and fantastic feeling that it brings — and also all of the terror of, 'Oh my God, they're going to hate us if we do this!' — it is rarefied, special air," he said. "And I wouldn't trade it for the world."

    Lost is currently available to stream on Hulu.

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    Kirstie Renae is a writer, blogger, and Austin-based actress with a penchant for binge-watching TV with her dogs. Follow her on Twitter @KirstieRenae.

    TOPICS: Lost, ABC, Damon Lindelof, Jeffrey Lieber, J.J. Abrams