Variety reports that USA Network will air the already completed fifth season of The Dead Zone this summer, and word in TV circles is that the batch likely will serve as the psychic thriller's swan song.

A USA spokesman insists the jury is still out on a renewal for "Dead Zone." Execs from USA and Lionsgate, which produces the show, declined comment.

"We have an option for a sixth season renewal," the rep says. "We'll make a decision about a potential pickup at the appropriate time."

But the show seems to already be on life support. Regular cast members David Ogden Stiers and John L. Adams have already been cast in fall pilots. Sources also say lead Anthony Michael Hall, who stars as the psychic cop, is free to pursue other projects.

Some insiders say USA's real problem is parent NBC, where ratings woes are creating trouble for the budgets of its profitable cablers. A USA rep denies that theory.

Cinemark Movie Club
Brian B.