Willow actor Warwick Davis has described the removal of the Disney+ series from the platform as embarrassing. “I meet lovely people on a daily basis who are fans of Willow, who are the reason the [Disney+] series was made,” he said on X. “Please tell me, Walt Disney Co., what do I say to these subscribers when they ask why they can’t watch the series anymore? #embarrassing”
Billed as a fantasy adventure, Willow, the Disney+ series is based on and serves as a sequel to the 1988 film of the same name. Produced by Lucasfilm, it was primarily filmed in Wales in April 2021 and made its debut on the streaming service in November 2022. Jon Kasdan penned the first episode and served as co-showrunner with Wendy Mericle.
Following the conclusion of Willow’s first eight-episode installment on Disney+, the streamer announced that there wouldn’t be a follow-up season.
Willow, the Disney+ series, begins two decades after the defeat of Queen Bavmorda. Now, a team of six unlikely heroes embarks on a journey to distant places, where they must confront their inner struggles and unite to protect their world from the Gales, who are loyal to the Crone. The series also brought fresh characters into a realm where brownies, sorcerers, trolls, and other mystical beings thrive.
Warwick Davis, who originally played Willow Ufgood in the 1988 film, reprised his role in the Disney+ series. Kasdan explained that Val Kilmer’s inability to return as Madmartigan was partially due to the Covid-19 pandemic and complications arising from throat cancer affecting his voice. Consequently, Madmartigan’s character made a voice-only appearance, performed by his son Jack.
There might still be some hope, as it is not uncommon for axed series to find new homes on other networks or streaming platforms.
Following the conclusion of Willow’s first eight-episode installment on Disney+, the streamer announced that there wouldn’t be a follow-up season. Still, Jon Kasdan described the situation as more of a hiatus rather than an outright cancellation, as new episodes had already been written. He expected production to be deferred for at least 12 months, and the cast was released from their contacts.
In May, the first season of Willow was scrubbed from the streaming platform as part of a broader content-removal initiative across Disney+ and Hulu to cut costs. The company has also removed dozens of other titles from its streaming platforms, including Y: The Last Man, The World According to Jeff Goldblum, Best in Dough, and Big Shot.
The 1988 fantasy film, on which the Willow Disney+ series is based, is still popular with fans. Directed by Ron Howard and produced by George Lucas, the film introduced viewers to Willow Ufgood, the humble farmer who becomes embroiled in an epic quest to protect the infant Elora Danan and defeat the evil Queen Bavmorda.
Willow actor Warwick Davis is embarrassed by Disney’s treatment of the recent series following its cancellation and complete removal from streaming.
For many fans, Willow holds a special place in their hearts as a nostalgic childhood favorite, which contributed to their disappointment when the Disney+ series was removed from the service. However, there might still be some hope, as it is not uncommon for axed series to find new homes on other networks or streaming platforms.
The legal drama 61st Street was canceled by AMC but was picked up by The CW. The action-adventure series Blood and Treasure was axed by CBS but found a new home at Paramount+. The Gordita Chronicles, a coming-of-age comedy series, was dumped by HBO Max but was picked up by Showtime. Uncoupled, the romantic comedy series, was canceled by Netflix but was also snapped up by Showtime.