Update: It turned out Willow after all, it may not have been maintained after one season.
According to John Kasdan, head writer of the Disney Plus series, Willow he’s just taking a break. Even more surprisingly, Kasdan revealed that the fantasy series will likely return for a second season – Kasdan made this clear in a lengthy statement on Twitter.
“I’m pretty sure if I was asked, neither I nor the good guys at Lucasfilm would characterize it. [the show’s cancellation] like this,” wrote Kasdan. “The truth is less glamorous, but here it is: last week, the decision was made to release our main cast for other series opportunities that may arise for them in the coming year. With all the TV and film production around the world, it’s unfair to limit an actor’s availability without having a clear sense of when you’ll need him again.”
Kasdan goes on to write that he actually finished the second season scripts – Volume II, as he puts it – even though WillowShooting for the next part will not start in the next 12 months. “We developed and wrote what we hope will be a fun, richer, darker and better Volume II,” added Kasdan.
The full statement can be read in the tweet below:
The original story follows.
Willowthe best fantasy series on Disney Plus, was canceled after one season.
As first reported by Deadline (opens in a new tab)The enchanting series on Disney Plus has been unceremoniously discontinued, leaving fans devastated that the iconic franchise will not be continuing after eight episodes.
Lucasfilm and Disney have not explained why Willow he was fired after one season. But as Disney tightens the strings on its production portfolio and Lucasfilm re-evaluates the production of movies and TV shows – the Disney subsidiary has already shelved a number of planned star Wars movies, it seems Willow is simply a victim of the studio’s plans to cut expenses and streamline the content map.
These streaming services have created a self-fulfilling prophecy – they keep canceling shows so we’re too afraid to watch things in case they get canceled and then cancel MORE because we don’t watch them. #willow https://t.co/2YMRIgW1flMarch 15, 2023
The Willow The television series was a small-screen sequel to the 1988 fantasy film of the same name, which has become a cult classic over the years. The sequel to the show, with Warwick Davis back as the titular sorcerer Nelwyn, picks up 20 years after the original film’s storyline and saw six unlikely heroes once again decide to seek Willow’s help to save the world.
Willow was an underrated hit upon its debut on Disney Plus, the series earned an 83% certified fresh rating on the review aggregator site Rotten tomatoes (opens in a new tab). Despite proving popular with fans and critics alike, it didn’t do enough to earn a second season on the main Disney streamer. Still, if nothing else, it will still be one of the best Disney Plus shows in our opinion.
If you want to read about its development, check out our exclusive chat with Willowcast on how “everything fitted together perfectly” making the TV series.
A fantastic show that deserved another round
Willow was not as successful as other Lucasfilm-led television projects such as The Mandalorian Or Andor. Its positioning as a television sequel to a somewhat niche fantasy film did not help it gain casual viewers; and since the show was released in November 2022, it probably had a hard time competing with some of the best Netflix shows that started around the same time, such as the megahit series Wednesday AND Crown season 5 i 1899.
Still, he deserved better than being canceled after one season. Willow found a delightful balance between honoring the original film and breathing new life into its franchise. The show’s pleasing approach to LGBT-plus and sapphic representation, the expansion of a fantastically evolved universe, and its focus on family (albeit with some thematically dark elements) made it a completely encompassing TV show as well. In short, there was much to admire Willow on Disney Plus.
However, as other TV shows on Disney Plus have found out – as well as those unlucky projects that have been canceled on Netflix, Prime Video and other streaming platforms – such positives don’t warrant a TV series renewal. Just look at the popular Netflix service 1899 A TV series that was canceled after one season or was recently canceled Three Pines on Prime Video, also after one season.
Disney Plus doesn’t have many traditional fantasy shows in its catalogue. Sure, TV series housed in some of the biggest franchises incl star Wars and Marvel, dabble in the fantasy genre. Other licensed third party series such as Buffy the Vampire Slayercan also be considered fantasy shows in some lights.
So it’s a shame that one of Disney’s most peculiar fantasy franchises was scrapped so soon after its debut. The Willow the franchise deserves better than being rejected like this, especially as – off star Wars AND Indiana Jones – Willow is Lucasfilm’s most famous entertainment facility. Let’s hope it’s not another 35 years earlier Willow returns to the large or small screen.
For more coverage based on Disney Plus, read about the best Disney Plus movies available. Or you can find out about all the new Disney Plus movies you can stream right now.