BY Adrienne Stanley | Jan 26, 2016 10:29 AM EST
"Moorim School" will conclude with 16-episodes, shortening its originally scheduled run.
On January 26, an official for KBS announced the programming change in a report published by the domestic outlet, Star News.
"Moorim School' will end its telecast from a 20-episode series to 16 and will be replaced by the original one-play with the working title, 'Babysitter," said the KBS spokesperson.
Star News cited the friction surrounding the supernatural drama and the production costs for the series, which continues to receive lackluster ratings, as motivating factors behind the decision to shorten its run.
According to statistics released by Nielsen Korea, "Moorim School" recorded 3.5 percent for its January 25 episode, drastically trailing MBC's "Glamorous Temptation" which received 12.5 percent in viewership and the rating juggernaut, "Six Flying Dragons," which yielded an audience percentage of 15.
Disappointing ratings for "Moorim School" follow a lackluster year for KBS dramas, with series like "Blood," "Sassy Go Go," "Assembly," and "Masked Prosecutor" yielding low viewership. "Producer," "Who Are You School 2015," and "Healer" were gems that stood apart from the fray of network flops.
Set within the fictitious Moorim Institute, the teen drama features an international cast in addition to leading stars Lee Hyun Woo, Hong Bin of VIXX and Seo Ye Ji.
It should be noted that "Moorim School" was one of the only KBS series to premiere in early 2016 that have not aired post-production.
KBS is paving the way for the post-production model with upcoming dramas like "Uncontrollably Fond" and Descendants of the Sun." Industry insiders have noted one of the major benefits to moving away from live shooting includes the ability for Chinese censors to screen the content of programs prior to purchasing them for simulcast on portals.
The series previously garnered attention for an alleged production stop, following a controversial scene which depicted stars Lee Hyun Woo and Hong Bin, burning yuan, the currency of mainland China.
Chinese netizens took to social media to respond to the scene, which came on the heels of a recent scandal involving Taiwan-born TWICE member Tzuyu and allegations that she was supportive of the separatist movement, which advocates for an independence Taiwan, as opposed to the "one-China" concept.
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