‘Willow’ canceled after one season on Disney+

The magical fantasy series “Willow” couldn’t conjure up a second season. Deadline reports that Disney+ has canceled the continuation of the 1988 film after a single season. 

“Willow” premiered in November 2022. While it was well-reviewed, it received little fanfare and got a surprisingly minor marketing push for a special effects-heavy fantasy show based on a popular franchise. Its low-key release was perhaps a sign of what was to come. 

The series was produced by Lucasfilm and served as a sequel to Ron Howard’s beloved film, which starred Warwick Davis as the titular sorcerer and Val Kilmer as a mercenary named Madmartigan who joins Davis on his quest to protect a baby princess named Elora Danan from an evil queen. Davis returned for the series, in which Willow aids a group of young people on their quest to rescue a kidnapped prince. The series also starred Ellie Bamber as adult Elora Danan, Ruby Cruz, Erin Kellyman, Tony Revolori, Amar Chadha-Patel, and Dempsey Bryk. Guest stars included Christian Slater and Hannah Waddingham along with Joanne Whalley and Kevin Pollak reprising their roles from the original. 

Jonathan Kasdan (“Solo: A Star Wars Story”) developed the series. In December, he told Comicbook.com that he was “begging” Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy for a second season. “We still feel like there are a lot of stories and bigger places to visit,” he said. And while there may be more stories to tell  – according to Deadline, Lucasfilm may revisit “Willow” in the future – it won’t be in this form. 

As TVLine notes, the “Willow” cancellation leaves Disney+ with only a handful of non-Star Wars or Marvel live-action scripted shows. There’s only “Doogie Kamealoha, M.D.,” “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series,” “National Treasure: Edge of History,” “The Santa Clauses,” and the upcoming “The Crossover.” The cancellation comes as Disney is trying to curb streaming spending as the streaming business model transitions from growth to profitability.   

“Willow” is currently nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding New TV Series. 

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