“Willow” will not be returning for more adventures on Disney+. Deadline reports that Disney+ canceled the Lucasfilm show after only one season of eight episodes. The new series was a continuation of the classic fantasy movie released in 1988, seeing the character Willow Ufgood (Warwick Davis) return for a new adventure.
‘Willow’ Gets Canceled After Only One Season
The original 1988 film was directed by Ron Howard from a story written by George Lucas. The new series was created by Jonathan Kasdan. It starred the returning Davis, Ellie Bamber, Ruby Cruz, Erin Kellyman, Tony Revolori, Amar Cadha-Patel, and Dempsey Bryk. The new series was set some years after the original, as Willow and his friends face a new threat to the realm.
The series performed solidly with critics, scoring 86% on Rotten Tomatoes. However, its audience score was considerably lower at 66%. Deadline also notes that while the show was canceled, “Willow” still remains an important IP in the Lucasfilm library, and the story could be revisited at some point in the future.
A reason wasn’t given for the cancellation, but the Deadline report notes that Disney is currently in the midst of reassessing its film slate. Additionally, media companies are now facing scrutiny on their spending for streaming content.
During a recent appearance at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference, Disney CEO Bob Iger spoke about Disney focusing on “quality over quantity” moving forward and cutting back on costs for producing television and films (via CNN). That means Disney might be pulling back on some of its streaming content and being more selective with what moves forward and what doesn’t, along with more shows getting canceled.
Besides, “Willow,” Lucasfilm is still producing a number of television projects for Disney+, including the currently streaming third season of “The Mandalorian,” set in the “Star Wars” Universe. Other upcoming “Star Wars” showcase in the works from Lucasfilm for Disney+ include “Ahsoka,” “Acolyte,” and “Skeleton Crew.”
Davis has been a recurring star in Lucasfilm projects for many years since he made his big-screen debut in 1983’s “Return of the Jedi” as the lovable Ewok, Wicket, who befriends the heroes. After starring in “Willow,” Davis returned to the “Star Wars” franchise throughout the years, appearing in multiple films, including “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” and “Solo: A Star Wars Story.” He also appeared in the animated series, “Star Wars Rebels” as the voice of Rukh.
For his other film roles, Davis also portrayed Professor Filius Flitwick and Griphook in the “Harry Potter” film series. He also starred as the titular “Leprechaun” in the horror film series. He also portrayed himself in the mockumentary sitcom series, “Life’s Too Short,” which he co-created with Stephen Merchant and Ricky Gervais.
Kasdan wrote the first episode of the new “Willow” Series and also served as co-showrunner along with Wendy Mericle, Howard, and Bob Dolman. Kathleen Kennedy and Michelle Rejwan executive produced the project.
All eight episodes of the “Willow” TV series are streaming now on Disney+.