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Future Of ‘Torchwood’ Up To Russell T. Davies

Starz needs assurances that creator won’t be distracted by other projects

Want to see another season of “Torchwood” air on Starz? Then you better hope that Russell T. Davies is ready to make some time for the show.

Starz president Chris Albrecht told Entertainment Weekly over the weekend that there is a lot of interest in bringing the “Doctor Who” spinoff back for Season 5, but really, it will have to be something just as spectacular — if not more — than the current “Miracle Day” season airing on the premium channel.

“‘Torchwood’ is not one of the shows we went into thinking about a yearly return,” Albrecht said. “It’s about Russell T. Davies. He has a lot of things on his plate. If ‘Torchwood’ is at the top of his list, that will affect the future of ‘Torchwood.'”

The comments aren’t surprising, considering “Torchwood” has virtually matched the audience the cable channel received for another genre outing, “Camelot,” which has since been cancelled. But premium cable — which depends on subscribers, not advertisers — doesn’t necessarily look to the number of people watching. More, how much buzz is created for the channel that leads to new subscribers.

So what Albrecht is asking of Davies? You did a great job on “Miracle Day.” So tell us, how are you going to top it?

Starz had originally asked for a 13-episode season, standard for premium cable shows, but reduced that to 10. However, it was not from a lack of confidence in “Miracle Day,” but more because 10 episodes was a tall order for BBC, which remains as a partner.

To be fair, however, the first two seasons of “Torchwood” were 13 episodes each. It wasn’t until “Children of Earth” that the seasons were cut to five episodes, and then shown over five successive nights in what was considered a story masterpiece by many critics.

It’s not clear if “Torchwood” has quite caught that magic yet for “Miracle Day,” although critics seem to be warming to the idea of a planet where no one — except John Barrowman’s Capt. Jack Harkness — can die.

Davies does have some other projects in the works, including a more mature version of his famous “Queer As Folk” series for the competing Showtime network.

“Torchwood” airs Fridays at 10 p.m ET on Starz.

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