DC Universe has cancelled Swamp Thing after only one season.
The streaming platform, which offers everything DC Comics to subscribers in the US, is yet to launch in the UK, with shows such as Swamp Thing and Doom Patrol not available on British screens. Before Swamp Thing could even cross the pond, however, it has already been given the axe by DC.
The live action series, one of several launch titles, is based on the character created way back in 1971 by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson. It follows Abby Arcane as she investigates what seems to be a deadly swamp-born virus in a small town in Louisiana but soon discovers that the swamp holds mystical and terrifying secrets. When unexplainable and chilling horrors emerge from the murky marsh, no one is safe.
Crystal Reed stars as Abby Arcane, alongside Will Patton (Armageddon, The Punisher, 24) as Avery Sunderland, a businessman who hides a ruthless determination to harness the power of the swamp for profit, Oscar nominee Virginia Madsen (Sideways) as his wife, Jeryl Prescott as Madame Xanadu, Jennifer Beals as Sheriff Lucilia Cable and Derek Mears (Predators, Sleep Hollow, The Flash) and Andy Bean (Power, Her and Now) as Swamp Thing and the scientist whose research leads to his demise and rebirth as the hero.
Mark Verheiden and Gary Dauberman were writers and EPs on the series, with James Wan and Michael Clear also exec-producing through Wan’s Atomic Monster banner. Atomic Monster produced the show in association with Warner Bros. TV.
The production was suddenly halted after 10 of 13 planned episodes, reports Collider, with the news of its cancellation revealed just after its first episode, which premiered on 31st May.
“All we’ve heard up until that point was how amazing everything was. And everyone’s going, ‘We have a big hit on our hands. This is crazy.’,” Mears told Collider on The Witching Hour podcast. “So it’s a weird nebulous space that we’re all in now because we don’t know officially why that would happen, or why they cancelled it.”
“We were on [episode] 10 when we got the call, going like, ‘Yeah, so we’re getting cut to 10 from 13,'” he added. “And we’re like, ‘What?!’ Also reading the script for 11 going, ‘No!'”
“I’m very proud of what we did, but also very saddened by the almost the sense of lack of respect,” he concluded.
The remaining episodes of Swamp Thing will play out on DC Universe in the USA. The decision raises questions about how DC Universe will fit into the wider streaming plans of owners WarnerMedia, which is launching its own VOD platform in the US later this year.
DC Universe casts its Swamp Thing
7th November 2018
DC Universe has officially found its Swamp Thing to lead a new live action series.
Created back in 1971 by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson, the character found its fan following in the 1980s, when Alan Moore made his name with a Swamp Thing series of comics. He’s since been brought to the screen by Wes Craven in 1982, and also a 1990s show for USA Network. Now, DC Universe is bringing him to screens in the modern era of TV, as part of its growing line-up of original programmes on the subscription streaming platform.
The show follows Abby Arcane as she investigates what seems to be a deadly swamp-born virus in a small town in Louisiana but soon discovers that the swamp holds mystical and terrifying secrets. When unexplainable and chilling horrors emerge from the murky marsh, no one is safe.
The programme has lined up an impressive cast, with Will Patton (Armageddon, The Punisher, 24) playing Avery Sunderland, a businessman who hides a ruthless determination to harness the power of the swamp for profit – in the comics, he was responsible for capturing the Swamp Thing with the intention of dissecting him. He’s joined by Oscar nominee Virginia Madsen (Sideways) as his wife, Maria Sunderland, a new character created for the show, Jeryl Prescott as Madame Xanadu, Jennifer Beals as Sheriff Lucilia Cable and Crystal Reed as Abby Arcane.
Now, DC Universe has confirmed that it has found the man to take on the job of playing Swamp Thing itself – or, to be exact, the two men to do so. Andy Bean (Power, Her and Now) and Derek Mears (Predators, Sleep Hollow, The Flash) have been cast in the series. Bean will play Alec Holland, the scientist whose research leads to his demise and rebirth as the hero, while Mears will play Swamp Thing that emerges as a result.
Described as a passionate biologist, Alec Holland becomes caught in the crosshairs of a small town nightmare when he discovers a bizarre local illness may be connected to his work in the swamp. Holland’s discovery leads him into conflict with dark forces, from which he emerges as the elemental figure known as Swamp Thing.
The show is produced by Atomic Monster in association with Warner Bros. TV, with James Wan, Mark Verheiden, Gary Dauberman, Michael Clear and Len Wiseman on board as Executive Producers. It will premiere on DC Universe in the USA in 2019, joining a line-up of original content that includes Doom Patrol, Young Justice, Harley Quinn and Titans, a gritty live-action take on the Teen Titans franchise. The latter will premiere at a future date on Netflix outside of the USA – whether that means Swamp Thing will do the same is yet to be confirmed, as DC Universe decides whether to launch its platform internationally or syndicate its content elsewhere.
To keep up-to-date with the latest DC Universe news and what it means for DC fans in the UK, watch this space.