Why NCIS: Hawaii Got Cancelled, Revealed by New Report

By Savannah Sanders Posted:
NCIS: Hawaii Season 3 wallpaper

Fans now have answers for why CBS canceled NCIS: Hawaii.

After a three-season run, the TV network opted to axe the police procedural spin-off starring Vanessa Lachey and NCIS: Los Angeles crossover star, LL Cool J

But given the show's Nielsen numbers, why is this particular NCIS narrative coming to an end?

[ Full Cast of NCIS: Hawaii 2024 - Season 3 Main Characters & Actors (Photos) ]

Reasons Why NCIS: Hawaii Was Cancelled

NCIS Hawaii

According to The Hollywood Reporter, NCIS: Hawaii's lackluster primetime performance resulted in the spin-off's cancellation. 

While the show averages 7.8 million viewers a week and 10 million over 35 days on cross-platform viewing, those numbers didn't break into the network's top-performing line-up.

Another reason is the already crowded line-up of NCIS shows.

In addition to the return of NCIS and the new NCIS: Sydney, CBS plans to introduce a new franchise prequel, Origins, for the 2024-2025 season. 

Adding to the list of NCIS projects are plans for a Paramount+ series with Cote de Pablo and Michael Weatherley reprising their original roles. 

Finally, there was the reality that NCIS: Hawaii's viewership wasn't enough to warrant the steep costs of shooting on location in Hawaii.

According to Deadline, efforts were made to greenlight a Season 4 with budget cuts and concessions, but ultimately, this wasn't enough to prevent it from being canceled.

CBS Entertainment President Amy Reisenbach further discussed the network's recent bout of cancellations, including NCIS: Hawaii, citing the following reasons: "cohesiveness of the schedule," "financials," and overall "performance:"

“It is incumbent on us to always keep the schedule fresh, keep momentum going. We had to make some really tough choices this year. Everything came back [from the Hollywood strikes] really strong, but ultimately we have to look at the cohesiveness of the schedule flow. We have to evaluate the financials and the performance overall, and we make tough decisions.”

Could NCIS: Hawaii Survive on Streaming?

Since NCIS: Hawaii has a proven audience, could the show find a second life on Paramount+ like S.E.A.L. Team and Evil

CBS President George Cheeks addressed this possibility via Variety, admitting that, even on streaming, "we don't have an unlimited amount of slots:"

“Budgets are challenged, so we don’t have an unlimited amount of slots on Paramount+. It’s something that we’re always open to, but it’s never a guarantee.”

Both Cheeks and Reisenbach dismissed the likelihood of NCIS: Hawaii continuing on streaming. 

Therefore, NCIS: Hawaii's third season will be the last of the series, making it the shortest of the franchise to date.

The final episode of NCIS: Hawaii's third season airs Monday, May 6 at 10 p.m. ET on CBS.

Check out other NCIS stories below:

Full Cast of NCIS 2024 - Season 21 Main Characters & Actors (Photos)

NCIS: Here's Why Bishop Left the Show

NCIS: Is Delilah Really Paralyzed? Wheelchair Explained

- About The Author: Savannah Sanders
Savannah Sanders joined The Direct as a writer in 2020. In addition to writing for The Direct's Star Wars, Marvel, and DC teams, Savannah specializes in the relationship between Disney's blockbuster franchises and the Disney Parks.