Next year was supposed to be the year that Freeform — the youth-oriented, Disney-owned cable network formerly known as ABC Family — would make a big push into the realm of Marvel programming. Two shows were originally set to premiere on the network in 2018: a drama based on the characters Cloak and Dagger and a comedy based on superteam the New Warriors.
Now, while Cloak and Dagger is still set to arrive on Freeform next year, New Warriors is looking for a new home.
Freeform, home to hit shows like Pretty Little Liars and Shadowhunters, is set to expand its original programming slate to four nights a week in 2018, but based on its various series commitments it could not find a slot for New Warriors despite ordering 10 episodes back in April. Marvel TV executives are very encouraged by the show's early pilot and don't want to delay the series beyond 2018. So Marvel asked if Freeform would give up the show. Freeform agreed, and now New Warriors is on the hunt for another place to air next year, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
So, where will the show land? That's a complicated question that doesn't yet have a clear answer. According to THR's sources, it's possible that Marvel is no longer able to sell its shows to outside companies (apart from Netflix, where it's developed a multi-show miniverse based around The Defenders), which would limit the possibile homes for the series. Disney is launched its own streaming service soon to contain movies, TV, and original programming, so it's possible New Warriors will land there. However, that service isn't set to launch until 2019, and Marvel is eager to get New Warriors to air sooner rather than later.
Key options include other streaming services (Marvel's Runaways is about to launch on Hulu), and of course the Disney-owned ABC already has some Marvel series in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Inhumans, but it's not clear which course the show will take yet. One thing is clear, though: Marvel really wants to get this thing out into the world by next year.
"We are extremely excited about Marvel’s New Warriors and look forward to finding the perfect partner to launch the series with in 2018,” said Dan Buckley, president of Marvel Entertainment.
New Warriors, based on the comic book superteam of the same name, is about a group of young heroes trying to navigate a world where they're discovering their powers while also reckoning with things like dating. The show will star Marvel heroes Mister Immortal (Derek Theler), Squirrel Girl (Milana Vayntrub), Night Thrasher (Jeremy Tardy), Speedball (Calum Worth), Microbe (Matthew Moy), and Debrii (Kate Comer).