There aren’t a lot of beloved video game adaptations. While Hollywood continues to churn out video game movies, they’re generally considered to miss the mark. Audiences get hopeful, only to be let down time and again. One of the few exceptions has been Netflix’s Castlevania. This adult animated series has been deemed an example of how to do it right. And now, after only four seasons, Netflix has cancelled their series. And now, in an unexpected turn of events, Deadline has heard that Netflix is planning to cancel the series only to start again fresh. Why would they immediately reboot their own show?
Well, first of all, because Netflix can. Netflix has proven to be open to new ideas when it comes to content creation. Their approach has been so different from the traditional television model that outlets are constantly trying to guess what they’ll do next. The streaming platform is also careful about what information they share in terms of their numbers, so outlets are constantly reporting that their content strategy is failing and then that it’s paying off, all with the smallest amount of data. Is it smart of Netflix to cancel a series like Castlevania only to then immediately reboot it? We don’t know enough of their numbers to make that call. But what we do know of their decision making process makes a lot of sense.
Castlevania’s released in 2017. It was Netflix’s first anime and their second adult animated comedy series. The show was well-received by critics and grew a loyal fan base. But then shortly after the scripts for season four were written, the streaming platform ran into a problem.
The show was created by Warren Ellis. He has a long history as a comic book writer. He created FreakAngels, Transmetropolitan, Trees, and Injection. His comic book, RED, inspired the movies of the same name. He’s been a prolific creator that many have seen at cons over the years.
Then, about 60 women came forward with reports about the Netflix show’s creator. They didn’t want Warren Ellis to be cancelled. They wanted a conversation. They created a website called So Many Of Us with a public letter covering some of their experiences with Ellis and his abusive behavior, which he denies. The streaming platform seemed to quickly cut ties with him. According to what Deadline hears, he has not been part of the conversations for future Castlevania projects.
Season 4 of Castlevania will air on Netflix May 13th. There will be ten episodes. It will be the final season of the Warren Ellis created show. He wrote that season before the So Many Of Us website was launched. It would seem that the streaming platform decided not to pursue more seasons of the Warren Ellis series at least in part because they don’t want to be associated with him after the sexual misconduct allegations were made public. It would also seem that they decided that shouldn’t mean they don’t pursue more projects in the same franchise they’ve already gotten started with.
And that’s where Netflix is at today, according to Deadline. They’ve cancelled a popular series. And now, they are actively pursuing the idea of creating a new Castlevania series with new characters. This would be a completely fresh start, though in the same world. Hopefully, they’ll manage to bring on a creator capable of making it great.