The upcoming Marvel series New Warriors is currently searching for a network home, after it was announced that cable network FreeForm will no longer be airing the series. Freeform, formerly known as the ABC Family Channel, issued a straight-to-series order for the show back in April, with a cast coming together over the summer. The project just wasn't the right fit for Freeform though, despite insiders claiming the series, "tested through the roof." Here's what Dan Buckley, president of Marvel Entertainment, had to say in a statement.
"We are extremely excited about Marvel's New Warriors and look forward to finding the perfect partner to launch the series with in 2018."
The pilot episode has tested so well that it has caught the attention of high-level Disney insiders, with sources claiming that there has been talk of moving the show to Disney's own upcoming streaming service, but that is said to be quite the long shot. Freeform is expanding its original programming to four nights a week starting next year, but the cable network could still not find a place for the series, which brings the beloved Marvel character Squirrel Girl to the small screen. Marvel asked Freeform to turn the show back over to them, with plans of still having it debut somewhere else at some point next year, since it was Freeform's show. The network obliged, giving it back to Marvel and Disney.
Aside from Doreen Green, (Squirrel Girl), other New Warriors characters include Zack Smith (Microbe), Dwayne Taylor (Night Thrasher), Craig Hollis (Mister Immortal), Deborah Fields (Debrii) and Robbie Baldwin (Speedball). The plot follows these six youngsters as decide to work together with their unique abilities for the greater good. While their powers aren't quite as powerful as The Avengers, with Squirrel Girl having the ability to communicate with squirrels while Microbe can communicate with germs, they plan on making a real difference with their positive outlook.
The role of Squirrel Girl went to Milana Vayntrub (This Is Us, Silicon Valley), despite early interest in the role from Mae Whitman, with Derek Theler playing Mister Immortal, Jeremy Tardy playing Night Thrasher, Callum Worth portraying Speedball, Matthew Moy as Microbe and Kate Comer as Debrii. Keith David also joined the cast in July, playing Ernest Vigman, a caustic municipal employee who butts up against the hopeful energy of the New Warriors. The series was created by Kevin Biegel (Cougar Town, Enlisted) who executive produces with Jim Chory and Jeph Loeb.
This report also indicates that Marvel is no longer able to sell its shows to any companies outside of the Disney umbrella, although Marvel has denied that rumor. If that's true, though, it would eliminate Netflix as a potential home for the series, despite Marvel airing Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist on Netflix, and would severely limit the possibilities for New Warriors to air on. As for the potential for the show airing on Disney's SVOD streaming service, it isn't slated to launch until 2019, and with Marvel eyeing a 2018 debut for New Warriors, the Disney streaming service seems to be out of the question as well. The Hollywood Reporter's sources also claim that Marvel could be eyeing other streaming services, seeking a two-season pickup, and if it finds a new home soon, production on the rest of the series after the pilot episode could begin as early as January 2018.