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SYFY WIRE Magic: The Gathering

Superman, Legends alum Brandon Routh cast as lead in Netflix's 'Magic: The Gathering' series after Russo Bros. exit

By Josh Weiss
Brandon Routh

Back in early June of 2019, Netflix and Wizards of the Coast announced that they were developing a "first-of-its-kind" animated Magic: The Gathering series alongside Avengers: Endgame directors, Joe and Anthony Russo.

Fast forward more than two years later, and the filmmaker siblings decided to bow out last week — along with head writers Henry Gilroy and Jose Molina — over creative differences, which seems to be a running theme with Netflix. Jeff Kline (Transformers: Prime) stepped in to run point on the production, overseeing a core team comprised of co-executive producer/story editor Steve Melching (Star Wars: The Clone Wars); supervising director Audu Paden; art director Izzy Medrano; and writers Nicole Dubuc, Russell Sommer, Dan Frey, and Taneka Stotts.

Despite this massive turnover, which the Russos reportedly helped facilitate before exiting, the project now has a leading man. According to a new report from Variety, the show has cast DC Universe veteran Brandon Routh (Superman Returns, Legends of Tomorrow) as the voice of a character named Gideon Jura.

Aside from the aforementioned creative rift, this is the first major development for the project in a good long while. Netflix has already confirmed that the narrative will center around Planeswalkers, the "unique [and] magic-wielding heroes and villains as they contend with stakes larger than any one world can hold," according to the official logline.

Del Rey plans to release a tie-in prequel novel written by Django Wexler sometime next year.

"Magic is a beloved global franchise with a massively engaged fan base that has only continued to grow over the last 25 years,”John Derderian, head of Anime programming for Netflix, said when the currently-untitled series was first announced two summers ago.

“More fans are enjoying Magic now than at any time in its 25-year history thanks to the enduring popularity of the tabletop game and our latest release War of the Spark, as well as the incredible success of our new digital game, Magic: The Gathering Arena.” added Chris Cocks, President of Wizards of the Coast.