One major project announced under Netflix's deal with bestselling comics creator Mark Millar is not moving forward, at least for now. Deadline reports that the streaming giant has opted not to proceed with production on a series based on Millar and artist Olivier Coipel's fantasy series The Magic Order, which was first announced last year.
According to the report, The Magic Order was in pre-production in Prague, but scripting work was still ongoing and no casting had been done at the time of Netflix's decision. Though uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic around the world was reportedly "a factor," it was "not the primary one." In fact, Netflix is apparently still eager to revisit the property in the future for adaptation into a series, just not in its current incarnation.
The Magic Order, which launched to massive sales in 2018, follows five magical families who lead seemingly ordinary lives, but who in reality are tasked with guarding the world from various supernatural threats. As the narrative begins, the Order is in danger as a mysterious enemy is picking off its members one by one, and the survivors are racing to identify the culprit and stop them before it's too late.
The streaming adaptation of The Magic Order was announced in May, 2019, and was originally intended as a directing vehicle for James Wan. Wan ultimately backed out of directing the project due to various pandemic reschedulings, but remained onboard as executive producer while director André Øvredal (Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark) stepped in as his replacement. The project was one of several major adaptations spinning out of Netflix's purchase of Millar's Millarworld and its various comic book properties in 2017, including Jupiter's Legacy, Huck, American Jesus, Sharkey the Bounty Hunter, and more. Jupiter's Legacy, which began production last year, is still on track to launch in 2021, and so far none of the other properties have been affected by The Magic Order decision.
So, while this is certainly a setback for Millarworld fans, it is far from the end of Netflix's work on Millar properties. In fact, in the long run, it's probably not even the end of The Magic Order. The streamer may still revisit the property in another form, and Millar has already promised new issues of the comic series are in the works.