Todd Peterson
March 31, 2004 05:29 PM

Struggling network ABC has all but pulled the plug on the highly touted miniseries “Stephen King’s Kingdom Hospital,” Reuters reports.

After just four weeks, the network is moving the hour-long show to a 9 p.m. Thursday night slot opposite CBS’s “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” and “The Apprentice” on NBC — one of the hottest hours in network television. The move is almost certain to kill the struggling series.

“Kingdom Hospital,” which centers on an artist in a haunted hospital, is reportedly drawn from a series by Danish filmmaker Lars von Trier (“Dogville”) as well as King’s own experience following a near-fatal accident when he was hit by a van while walking several years ago.

The 13-episode series opened with a strong draw for its two-hour debut on March 3, but audiences quickly dropped off.

“Kingdom Hospital” also marks a return to television of Brat Pack actor Andrew McCarthy (“Pretty in Pink,” “Weekend at Bernie’s”), who plays Dr. Hook on the show.

McCarthy, who has spent most of the past five years in stage productions after overcoming alcoholism in the early 1990s, recently spoke about his addictions and the opportunity the series afforded him. “It’s certainly a more high-profile job than I’ve had in years,” the 41-year-old actor told

Added series director Craig Baxley, “I think (Andrew’s) basically reinvented himself on this. … He realizes it’s a chance to take his career to the next level, which I think he’s certainly going to do regardless of how this works out.”

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