Tag Archives: dc universe

Swamp Thing Executive Producer James Wan Doesn’t Know or Understand Why It Was Cancelled

After airing just one episode, Swamp Thing on DC Universe was cancelled. That’s despite positive reviews of the show.

We have our theory as to part of the reason, but the series executive producer, and Aquaman director, James Wan seems to not know why either.

In a post on Instagram, Wan says he doesn’t “really know or understand” why it was cancelled. You can read that many ways, he doesn’t really know or he knows and just doesn’t understand the reasoning.

The series was to run 13 episodes but that was cut short to 10. Rumors have swirled as to why including creative differences, budget issues, too expensive, the future of DC Universe as a whole, to simple not liking it. This is one whose real reason may never be known.

North Carolina Denies the Lack of Grant Rebates are the Cause of Swamp Thing’s Cancellation

DC Universe's Swamp Thing

Early this week we ran a story that DC Universe‘s Swamp Thing‘s cancellation was possibly due in part of issues arising from tax grants in North Carolina.

Speculation ran rampant that the production was promised $40 million but only received a fraction of that, a claim that was easily debunked and we did exactly that.

We originally wrote:

The show is eligible for up to $12 million. That money has been set aside until an audit is completed. They had originally requested $16.3 million for the 13-episode season.

In reality, the production received what it requested, $12 million for the season (the maximum amount one can receive) and $4.9 for the pilot episode. We were correct on the $12 million and misunderstood the $4.9 million part. Pilot episodes are counted as their own series, hence the separate amounts. Closer to reality than any other reporting.

Since the budget for the grant program for the year is $31 million and a production can get up to 25% back, the speculated $40 million funding other sites reported wasn’t in any reality or close to it.

Guy Gaster, the Director of the North Carolina Film Office released a statement concerning the situation:

The production team for Swamp Thing knew before production began that North Carolina would offer up to $4.9M in rebates for their pilot episode and $12M for the remainder of season one. They accepted said offer and even signed a contract with the state with those figures. Per state legislation, the NC Film and Entertainment grant can only award up to $12M per season for a series. Per the program’s guidelines, pilot episodes are counted as their own series. In total, the program only receives $31M annually.

But, what Gaster doesn’t address is the still murky future of tax grants in North Carolina which is what our reporting was really focused on and a possible reason for the show’s initial cancellation. Rumors are it’s being shopped around to channels such as The CW and HBO.

From our original article:

In the 2019-2020 state budget, $31 million was to be removed from the fund due to it having a little over $67 million remaining. That money though was already promised. The future of the fund remains up in the air.

Elected officials seem to be disagreeing as to whether the incentives should exist at all. While the money has been restored in the budget proposed by the House, it hasn’t made it in to the Senate’s proposed budget. Budget negotiations are ongoing ahead of the fiscal year’s close on June 30.

This confusion by elected officials has likely lead to miscommunication and disruption and most likely made production not worth it and a logistical issue. The unknown nature of future incentives also makes planning for future production difficult.

Rep. Ted Davis (R-New Hanover) wrote in a post:

Because of miscommunication with the State Commerce Department, the chief House Appropriation Chairs were led to believe that there was $67,380,519 of unused funds in the Film Grant Fund, so an additional $31,000,000 was not necessary in the 2019-2020 fiscal year. This resulted in that amount being cut from the proposed Budget for the upcoming fiscal and was to be used for other things.

As explained above, due to a misunderstanding the 2019 budget in the North Carolina House and Senate removed future funding for their film and television grant program. The program currently has money available but that money is already promised. $31 million in future funding was in doubt, and still is.

The funding was replaced in the House budget proposal. Reconciliation between the House and Senate, and a possible veto from the Governor for the overall budget, future funding is still up in the air.

Wilmington Biz agrees with the assessment that film officials and studios are waiting to see how this allocation plays out for future budgets before making decisions and committing to film in the state.

Film officials and studios are waiting to see how film incentive allocations for fiscal years 2019-20 and 2020-21 fare in the budget reconciliation process.

Since production planning for a second season would begin relatively soon it’d be silly to continue if you don’t know if 20% of your budget won’t be present for future seasons. The amateur egg on face removal of the funding from proposed initial budget, plus a questionable future, is enough for a production to pull out, especially one with a budget around $85 million. The grant application form for Swamp Thing, filed with the N.C. Department of Commerce, estimates the production’s spending at $65 million in the state. Another $20 million was spent on its pilot. Crew numbers were estimated at 597.

So, while this year’s commitment was paid it’s the future of funding for the industry that’s up in the air.

Swamp Thing Cancelled After One Season, Possibly Due to North Carolina’s Broken Promises

DC Universe Swamp Thing

Swamp Thing debuted on DC Universe last week, and after one episode, the series will not be getting a second. The remainder of the show’s run will play out as normal on the streaming service but won’t return after that.

The season was cut short going from 13 episodes to 10 episodes and while some have said it was due to creative differences or a shift in Warner‘s streaming plans, but the reason might be much simpler, money.

It seems North Carolina is a bit confused on their promised millions of dollars in film grants and future funding for such grants are up in the air. The show is eligible for up to $12 million. That money has been set aside until an audit is completed. They had originally requested $16.3 million for the 13-episode season.

Tax rebates and grants are a way for states to draw production to them and $12 million is a good chunk of the season’s reported $85 million budget. Productions are eligible for up to 25% rebate on qualifying expenses. The money is paid out after production is completed and an audit happens. This can take up to three years after production.

In the 2019-2020 state budget, $31 million was to be removed from the fund due to it having a little over $67 million remaining. That money though was already promised. The future of the fund remains up in the air.

Elected officials seem to be disagreeing as to whether the incentives should exist at all. While the money has been restored in the budget proposed by the House, it hasn’t made it in to the Senate’s proposed budget. Budget negotiations are ongoing ahead of the fiscal year’s close on June 30.

This confusion by elected officials has likely lead to miscommunication and disruption and most likely made production not worth it and a logistical issue. The unknown nature of future incentives also makes planning for future production difficult.

The state had a tax rebate program which was then switched to a grant program. Legislation has been put forth to reinstate the tax incentive program.

Swamp Thing and the film Uncle Frank generated $75 million in in-state spending and created over 1,500 jobs.

Since all entertainment in the end is a spreadsheet, the likely reason for the cancellation is that the series wasn’t worth producing without these tax incentives and the overall cost to produce was too high to justify going forward.

DC Universe’s Swamp Thing Gets a New Trailer

Swamp Thing 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.

Based on the DC characters originally written and drawn by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson, Swamp Thing is a new original series for DC Universe. The series debuts May 31 with new episodes weekly.

Watch the Full Doom Patrol Pilot for Free

If you’re not subscribed to DC Universe and haven’t had a chance to watch any of their shows, DC Entertainment has made the first episode of Doom Patrol free to stream.

Doom Patrol reimagines one of DC’s most beloved groups of Super Heroes: Robotman aka Cliff Steele (Brendan Fraser), Negative Man aka Larry Trainor (Matt Bomer), Elasti-Woman aka Rita Farr (April Bowlby) and Crazy Jane (Diane Guerrero), led by modern-day mad scientist Niles Caulder aka The Chief (Timothy Dalton).

Each member of the Doom Patrol suffered a horrible accident that gave them superhuman abilities but also left them scarred and disfigured. Traumatized and downtrodden, the team found their purpose through The Chief, coming together to investigate the weirdest phenomena in existence. Following the mysterious disappearance of The Chief these reluctant heroes will find themselves in a place they never expected to be, called to action by none other than Cyborg (Joivan Wade), who comes to them with a mission hard to refuse.

Part support group, part Super Hero team, the Doom Patrol is a band of superpowered freaks who fight for a world that wants nothing to do with them.

The series is based on DC characters originally written and drawn by Arnold Drake, Bob Haney, and Bruno Premiani.

DC Universe’s Swamp Thing Wants a Water Embrace in this New Trailer

Swamp Thing 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 series is based on the DC characters originally written and drawn by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson.

The new original series premieres May 31. New episodes weekly, only on DC Universe.

Around the Tubes

Xena: Warrior Princess #1

The weekend is almost here! What geeky things will you all be doing? Sound off in the comments. While you wait for the weekday to end and weekend to begin, here’s some geeky news for you.

Gizmodo – What Would Really Happen if Thanos Erased Half of All Life on Earth? – Science!

Engadget – DC Universe scales back ‘Swamp Thing’ over ‘creative differences’ – This is the issue, not the platform.

DigitalSpy – Netflix reveals The Umbrella Academy season 1’s massive viewing figures – That’s solid numbers.

CBR – The Gifted Canceled by Fox – Meh.

Reviews

The Beat – Planet of the Nerds #1
Comic Attack –
Xena: Warrior Princess #1

Swamp Thing Will Premiere May 31 on DC Universe Plus DC’s Entire Digital Catalogue in April

At WonderCon it was announced that the live action Swamp Thing series will premiere on DC Universe May 31st.

Swamp Thing follows Abby Arcane (played by Crystal Reed) who investigates an epidemic with fellow scientist Alex Holland (played by Andy Bean). Holland “dies” and is transformed into the mysterious creature Swamp Thing (played by Derek Mears).

Swamp Thing is the next live action series after Titans and Doom Patrol. The Third season of Young Justice also premiered on the service.Stargirl is another live action series coming to the service and will debut in early 2020.

The other big announcement is that the company’s entire digital comics library will be added for users in April. New comics will be added to the service after a year.

Titans: The Complete First Season on Digital March 21 with Blu-ray/DVD to Follow

Titans

A bold, new take on DC’s famed Super Hero team – from executive producers Akiva Goldsman, Geoff Johns, Greg Berlanti, Greg Walker, Sarah Schechter and John Fawcett – comes to Digital on March 21, 2019 when Warner Bros. Home Entertainment releases Titans: The Complete First Season. All 11 thrilling episodes of the DC Universe digital subscription service’s inaugural live-action series will be available for purchase ($24.99 HD SRP) from digital retailers. Pre-orders for the digital release are available now.

Titans follows a group of young soon-to-be Super Heroes from across the world of DC as they come of age and find belonging in a gritty take on the classic Teen Titans franchise. Former Gotham City vigilante Dick Grayson and Rachel Roth, a special young girl possessed by a strange darkness, get embroiled in a conspiracy that could unleash Hell on Earth. Joining them in their quest are the mysterious Starfire and loveable Beast Boy. Together they become a surrogate family and team of heroes while battling villains, demonic forces … and encountering familiar faces from across DC’s legendary canon.

The Digital release of Titans: The Complete First Season release will include 1080p Full HD Video with DTS-HD Master Audio for English 5.1. In addition to featuring all 11 episodes in high-definition, the bundle includes over 40 minutes of special features including a new featurette, a tremendous value and collectors’ opportunity.

Titans: The Complete First Season takes viewers back to each character’s origin story as Dick Grayson emerges as the leader of the core team of DC Super Heroes. The series stars Brenton Thwaites (Maleficent, The Giver, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales) as Dick Grayson/Robin, Anna Diop (Bosch, 24: Legacy) as Koriand’r/Starfire, Teagan Croft (Home and Away) as Rachel Roth/Raven, and Ryan Potter (Big Hero 6, Supah Ninjas) as Gar Logan/Beast Boy. Also featured in the series’ first season are Minka Kelly (Almost Human, Friday Night Lights) as Dawn Granger/Dove, Alan Ritchson (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Smallville) as Hank Hall/Hawk, Seamus Dever (Castle) as Trigon, Curran Walters (Too Close to Home) as Jason Todd/Robin, Conor Leslie (Shots Fired, The Man in the High Castle) as Donna Troy, and Rachel Nichols (Continuum) as Angela Roth.

Titans: The Complete First Season also includes a crossover episode that introduces the Doom Patrol – Brendan Fraser (The Mummy, Crash, Looney Tunes: Back in Action) as Robotman, Matt Bomer (White Collar, Magic Mike) as Negative Man and April Bowlby (Two and a Half Men, Drop Dead Diva) as Elasti-Woman. Doom Patrol is another all-new series that premiered on the DC UNIVERSE streaming service in February.

Based on the characters from DC, Titansis produced by Weed Road Pictures in association with Berlanti Productions, Warner Bros. Television and DC Entertainment, with executive producers Akiva Goldsman (Constantine, Fringe, Star Trek: Discovery), Geoff Johns (Aquaman, Wonder Woman), Greg Berlanti (The Flash, Supergirl, Riverdale, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow), Greg Walker (Extant) Sarah Schechter (The Flash, Supergirl, Blindspot, Black Lightning) and John Fawcett (Orphan Black). Titans has already been greenlit for a second season, which will also air on the DC UNIVERSE digital subscription service.

Titans: The Complete First Season will also be released on Blu-rayTM and DVD ahead of the show’s highly-anticipated second season.

BONUS FEATURES

  • Raven and Robin Dark Rebirth (new featurette)
  • The Story of Titans 
  • The Characters of Titans 
  • The Making of Titans 
  • Dick Grayson’s and Rachel Roth’s Dark Past
  • A look at vigilantes Hawk and Dove
  • The identity of Titans Kory Anders/Starfire
  • Gar Logan’s Journey
  • Rachel’s Powers
  • The Doom Patrol meets the Titans. 
  • Jason Todd’s Robin
  • From Comic to Live Action Adventure
  • Meet Wonder Girl
  • Dick Grayson’s Dark Past
  • World of Superheroes and Vigilantes

11 ONE-HOUR EPISODES

  1. “Titans”
  2. “Hawk and Dove”
  3. “Origins”
  4. “Doom Patrol”
  5. “Together”
  6. “Jason Todd”
  7. “The Asylum”
  8. “Donna Troy”
  9. “Hank and Dawn”
  10. “Koriand’r”
  11. “Dick Grayson”

DIGITAL

The first season of Titans will be available to own on Digital. Digital allows consumers to instantly stream and download all episodes to watch anywhere and anytime on their favorite devices.  Digital is available from various retailers including iTunes, Google Play, Vudu and others.

Around the Tubes

The weekend is almost here and we hear there’s a movie called Captain Marvel opening! Who’s seeing it this weekend? Sound off in the comments and let us know what you thought of it! While you wait for the work day to end and the weekend to begin, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

Sweetie #1

Book Riot – Delicious Comic Cookbooks For The Consummate Food Nerd – This is pretty cool.

Newsarama – Adrienne Barbeau Returning for DC Universe’s Swamp Thing – Very cool.

The Comichron – 25 years ago: Marvel tries to launch a mail-order store — and ignites the Distributor Wars – Some great comic history.

Reviews

AIPT! – Age of X-Man: Prisoner X #1
The Beat –
Mis(h)adra
Talking Comics –
Sweetie #1

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