+ Q: But Marvel already said Daredevil will be back in the future.
A: They are talking about the character of Daredevil, not necessarily the actor or the current show.
+ Q: Why haven't we heard from Marvel / Disney / Netflix, etc about our campaign yet?
A: Probably because there's nothing to hear...yet. This is an unusual cancellation that doesn't have an exact precedent. It's not a traditional cancellation like Lucifer or Brooklyn 99, where the production studio is allowed to shop the cancelled property around to new networks. There are secretive and very sticky IP / rights / contract related issues between Disney / Marvel + Netflix, ones that we simply aren't privy to and won't ever be.
My pleasure and no unfortunately I can't comment on anything having to do with anything contractual. I hope you understand it has nothing to do with Marvel or Netflix ignoring the fans, these things are confidential and proprietary. https://t.co/lpkJfeFKU5— JoeQuesada (@JoeQuesada) January 14, 2019
Not to mention Netflix still has two Marvel TV properties in their line up, which means an obligation to finish out this partnership before moving forward with any next steps or making more specific and public remarks.
We definitely empathize with fans who want to see some more immediate action from the companies involved - we are in the same boat - but this has always been a marathon, not a sprint. What we can do as a campaign is to keep the conversation loud and consistent, and keep applying positive pressure from our public campaign initiatives.
+ Q: Stop panicking. It’s clearly moving to Disney+.
A: Let’s clear something up - the oft-cited factoid about Disney pulling its content off of Netflix in 2019 was for the movies, not television. This is worth mentioning because it’s something we’ve seen cited often as proof that the shows are going straight back to Disney. But this is just the public conflating two different agreements Disney had with Netflix.
More importantly, the [Disney move] will not affect the Marvel Netflix shows. The waters of the entertainment business can be muddy, and contracts hard to figure out for the average viewer, but rest assured that the Disney theatrical distribution deal and the Marvel Television development deal are two separate things. The original Disney distribution deal with Netflix, in a nutshell, simply gave Netflix exclusive streaming rights for all of Disney's theatrical releases, along with Disney-owned and produced television shows from its channels. [Source]
And as popular as the Disney+ theory is, the public has been given no firm indication by either Netflix or Marvel / Disney this is the plan at all. Reporting over the past year from mainstream press, industry publications, and insiders has in fact reflected the unlikelihood of such an occurrence, suggesting the Disney+ platform will stay family friendly.
Here’s how it will work. The OTT platform, whose price point wasn’t mentioned, will start with a domestic service only, and then expand overseas. There will be no R-rated films, and the programming will be consistent with the Disney brand. The R-rated stuff will go on Hulu. The plan now is to leave the various Marvel series where they are, which means Netflix will hang onto its superhero inventory. [Source]
+ Q: If it’s not moving to Disney+ right away, then why are we writing to Disney?
A: In December 2018 The Hollywood Reporter posted an interview with Kevin Mayer, the chairman of Walt Disney direct-to-consumer and international divisions - in other words, the man who will be overseeing all of the Disney-owned streaming platforms, including Disney+ and Hulu. He had this to say about the Marvel Netflix shows:
Would you consider reviving the Marvel shows that Netflix canceled?
They are very high-quality shows. We haven't yet discussed that, but I would say that's a possibility.
This confirms that, at the time of cancellation, there were no plans in the works to move anything to Disney+. However, a high ranking Disney exec stating on the record that there’s a possibility of Marvel Netflix shows being revived on a Disney-owned streaming service is incredibly significant. It reaffirms our need to continue communicating as a united fanbase that we want to see this happen with THIS cast and creative team, and that we are willing to wait for it!
+ Q: Why are people talking about waiting two years for more Daredevil? If we have to wait two years, won’t they just reboot and recast?
A: On December 12, 2018, Variety released an exclusive report stating the following:
Sources tell Variety that the deal for the original four Marvel shows includes a clause that prevents the characters from appearing in any non-Netflix series or film for at least two years after cancellation. That means that “Daredevil,” “Luke Cage,” and “Iron Fist” — which were all canceled this year at Netflix — could not come to the Disney streaming service until 2020 at the earliest.
While there are many contract-related issues between Disney / Marvel and Netflix that we may not be privy to, we do know that Daredevil cannot be revived by Disney until 2020 at the earliest. While we’d love to have the show back on our screens much sooner, we’ve waited two and a half years between seasons before, and we can do it again.
There’s no reason for a reboot or recasting of these roles. With Charlie Cox on record in his support of the Save Daredevil campaign and his willingness to “pick up the batons” again, that’s never been more clear. As fans of THIS show, we need to keep raising our voices to remind Marvel / Disney that THIS cast and creative team are worth waiting for.
+ Q: This campaign is way too professional and organized to be fan-run. Are you Disney?
A: No, we're not Disney! We're just a group of fans who came together shortly before the Daredevil cancellation and have decided to stick together to fight for the return of our show. If you'd like to learn more about us, we have a brief about page here. We also did an interview with ManWithoutFear.com in January 2019, which you can read here.
+ Q: I don’t believe in petitions. / We can’t do anything about it anyway. What’s the point?
A: We understand that everyone has their own opinion about this cancellation and what can realistically be done, and that it’s within everyone’s right to decide what course of action is best for them. But those of us behind this campaign would prefer to keep fighting for this show, and we know we’re not alone. If participating in fan campaigns isn’t your thing, but you enjoyed season 3 at all, we’d still invite you to sign the petition. It takes less than a minute to make a difference - and join more than 200,000 fans who feel the same way!
+ Q: Are the petition and SaveDaredevil.com the same thing?
A: No, but we are working together. The original SaveDaredevil.com began as a social media campaign + website on Monday, November 26 under the hashtag #RenewDaredevil. But before the initial campaign could fully launch, the show was cancelled, and as a result, we pivoted the campaign into #SaveDaredevil. Separately from this, a petition was started by another passionate Daredevil fan, Joseph Garcia. When it was clear his petition was garnering the most attention of all the fan-initiated petitions, we decided to reach out, partnering on promotion and petition updates that align the campaign and petition more closely together, allowing fans to easily find both. So if you have a question about the petition, reach out to him on Twitter; if you have a campaign question, you can reach out to us!
+ Q: Are you also campaigning to save other Marvel/Netflix properties?
A: Many of us are big fans of some or all of the other Marvel shows in addition to Daredevil, and we are supportive of the initiatives of other fans who, like us, want to express support for their favorite show in ways that are constructive and positive.
However, Daredevil remains the most obvious common denominator for all of the fans in the "Fandom Without Fear" and focusing on this cast of characters and this show helps keep our message on point, and Daredevil fans engaged. The logistics of running just the one campaign is keeping many of us quite busy!
This also means that we are not officially associated with any petition other than the one linked to on this website.
+ Q: Netflix cancelled the show because viewership was down, plain and simple.
A: While no one has exact access to the numbers besides Netflix, there has been reporting that Daredevil has been one of Netflix’s most popular originals since its premiere.
And here's a weekly assessment of top streaming shows on Netflix and other streaming platforms since Business Insider began tracking shows on streaming platforms - Daredevil has been sitting comfortably on that list since it launched its third season:
Week of 10/30
Week of 11/6
Week of 11/18
Week of 11/25
Week of 12/3
Week of 12/9
Week of 12/17
Week of 12/23
Week of 12/29
Week of 1/6
Week of 1/13
Week of 1/20
Week of 2/3
Week of 2/10
Week of 2/17
Week of 2/24
Week of 3/3
UPDATED - Week of 3/10
+ Q: Why are you blaming Netflix? Disney is behind this. They won't allow Netflix to make any more seasons.
A: Disney may be involved in production, but they are not allowed to call the shots on renewal or cancellation.
Unlike the movie studio, which can announce a Captain Marvel movie will be out in 2019, the television studio will always be beholden to our networks, and so if our networks want another season of Iron Fist, we’re ready to go. We’re just waiting for the answer. The show’s been out of a week.
Loeb directly addresses the nature of cancellations again in a 1/19/2019 interview with EW after the release of season 2 of Marvel's The Punisher (spoilers in the link if you haven't watched TPS2):
It’s been reported that the decisions to cancel those shows came as a surprise, after writers’ rooms had already been assembled. Was that really case for all three?
LOEB: I’d rather not get into the specifics, other than we were and continue to be extremely disappointed by the decision that the network made. But when you’re in the game, that’s all you can do. Everyone has a favorite television show that has been canceled on every single network, and we just happen to be at that place right now.
Netflix has also unequivocally come out in regards to their power to cancel these shows.
The news came from Netflix’s Chief Content Officer, Ted Sarandos, who’s probably better equipped to discuss the future of the Netflix/Marvel universe than anyone else (besides maybe CEO Reed Hastings). Responding to a question about the future of those shows, Sarandos offered a reassuring, if blunt, response.
“Those shows are for us to cancel,” he said, “and we’re super happy with their performance so far.”
Furthermore, it's questionable what degree of knowledge Disney could have had regarding some of their more popular television properties getting canned, as it seems Marvel execs were as stunned as the producers when they heard the show had been canceled.
Had a last lunch yesterday with the Daredevil writers. Sushi provided by our Captain, @erikoleson. Marvel execs there too, just as stunned as we were. More than lunch, really: a wake. A show gets cancelled, all those characters we love die. Why I hate my job. Why I love it, too.— Sam Ernst (@havensam) December 1, 2018
A December 2018 interview with Amy Rutberg on Inverse.com confirms much of the same:
“We had heard rumors we would start production as early as February 2019,” she says. “It’s a little unusual to be that far ahead in the planning and cancel the show, which makes me think Netflix was laboring over whether or not to cancel it. My guess was it was not an easy decision.”
When asked where she thought Season 4 might have been headed, Rutberg reveals that the cast and crew all assumed Daredevil would run for at least five seasons, giving the show a chance to explore a new villain before potentially returning to Kingpin for a final showdown.
It does seem that something turned sour in the Marvel - Netflix relationship in the fall, one that kicked off Luke Cage's abrupt dismissal, and put Daredevil on the track of cancellation too. In the exclusive Deadline article announcing Luke Cage's untimely demise (on the same day as DDS3's premiere):
A writers’ room under showrunner Cheo Hodari Coker had been working for around six months producing scripts and taking notes from Netflix and Marvel. As actors including lead Mike Colter remained under contract, a formal Season 3 order was considered almost a foregone conclusion by all concerned. [...] It eventually escalated to behind-the-scenes turmoil in the past two days and demands for changes in creative regime. With Marvel and Netflix seemingly intractable and on different sides of the disputes, a harsh cancelation became the only viable exit strategy, it appears.
+ Q: Why are we writing to Hulu? They’re not international so I won’t be able to watch the show in my country.
A: We have been targeting Hulu as an option for this campaign because once the Disney - Fox merger is complete, Disney will own a majority stake in the platform, with the possibility of 100% control in the future:
Hulu began as a collaboration among media titans Disney, Comcast, Fox, and AT&T, which acquired its stake through the acquisition of Time Warner. Now Disney is preparing to acquire Fox, which would give it a 60% stake in the streaming service, and if both Comcast and AT&T sell their respective positions to Disney, giving it 100% control over Hulu, it could become a premiere movie-streaming powerhouse that challenges Netflix's preeminence. [Source]
Disney has also previously released information about Hulu being their target platform for rated-R content since Disney+ will be staying strictly PG-13. With this in mind, Hulu becomes a more attractive possibility as a future home for the current version of the show.
There will be no R-rated films [on Disney+], and the programming will be consistent with the Disney brand. The R-rated stuff will go on Hulu. The plan now is to leave the various Marvel series where they are… [Source]
We understand that non-U.S. fans may be hesitant about Hulu as a platform due to its lack of availability internationally. While it's true that Hulu, at this time, is U.S. only, Disney will likely be working to take the platform international in the next few years. As stated by Kevin Mayer in his Hollywood Reporter interview:
How does Hulu fit into your international plans?
We would like to have an international trilogy of services where it makes sense. We want a sports service like we have here; we want a general entertainment service, which would be Hulu, in different places around the world where we don't have that; and we want to have Disney around the world. An international rollout of Hulu would be something that we'd be very interested in, and we're talking to Hulu about that now.
As it currently stands, people in other countries may still have access to Hulu content through international licensing deals with other local streaming platforms and television networks. For example, two popular Hulu properties - The Handmaid’s Tale and Marvel’s Runaways - air on HBO Nordic in Sweden. Even if the international rollout of Hulu does not happen immediately, it’s possible it will have started by the time Disney is able to take action again on the fate of the show.
+ Q: I heard a rumor that Hulu is going to revive the Netflix shows. Is this true?
A: In a February 2019 interview with TheWrap during TCA (a network press event for the Television Critics Association), Craig Erwich, the head of Hulu's Originals division, said this when he was asked about the possibility of Hulu Originals reviving the Netflix shows:
“Marvel has a ton of titles we’d be interested in,” he said, when asked by TheWrap if Hulu would have interest in reviving one of those series. “It kind of just depends on when they’re ready, [and] who, most importantly, is going to be behind these things.”
While this is far from any definitive confirmation Hulu can or will follow through at this point, the fact that Hulu is even saying this on record is a positive sign. We already know Disney will very soon be a majority stakeholder in Hulu's operations after the ink is dry on the merger and have plans to use the platform as a destination their R-rated content. There was also a recent announcement of 5 brand new animated series in the works with Marvel Television, which at the very least paves the way for a continued partnership post-merger. One thing is for sure: we will do our part to continue making it known to Hulu that there is a tremendous fanbase ready to bring their dollars to the subscription service that Saves Daredevil.
+ Q: I’m confused, what about the rights? I read a lot of stuff about that, and I don't get it.
A: In short, it’s complicated. But here’s what Forbes had to say on the topic back in August 2017:
The Marvel shows on Netflix are produced by Netflix, and so belong to Netflix as much as Marvel. Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist aren't going anywhere, nor is the Punisher, whose own series is set to debut later this year. Until something changes, Netflix also is perfectly within its rights to keep partnering with Marvel Television to develop new shows. It's a necessary reality for Netflix: Just a few weeks after Netflix stock hit an all-time high, it was reported earlier this year that the company was over $20 billion in long-term debt and liabilities thanks to its focus on an original content blitz. [Source]
Netflix pays money to produce the Marvel shows, but they don't own the IP. Those shows have clear and consistent branding to Marvel Studios. [Source]
In other words, Marvel / Disney definitely owns the intellectual property, but Netflix has always maintained massive rights over the handling and distribution of these particular shows. And in light of the messy divorce between Marvel and Netflix, we know from this Variety exclusive report that the characters are barred from appearing in any non-Netflix series or film for at least two years after cancellation. That being said, we also know from Kevin Mayer’s interview with the Hollywood Reporter that a future revival of Netflix Marvel shows on a Disney-owned streaming service is indeed a possibility.
3/ To point, the shows will remain NETFLIX ORIGINALS for years, Disney would have to buy them back (and says they don’t fit with Disney+’s positioning and won't be rebought) and there’s likely a hold on re-using the IP in TV (i.e. Disney can’t just launch a new Luke Cage in 2019)— Matthew Ball (@ballmatthew) December 3, 2018
Shortly after the cancellation, Matthew Ball, former Head of Strategy at Amazon Studios, tweeted regarding the matter. As outlined above, new information has since come to light in respect to contractual issues, but his tweets further affirm that the decision to cancel belonged to Netflix.
There's still a lot we don't know, but the situation seems less cut and dry than initially presented, and we hope there is room for negotiation.
+ Q: The season 3 finale felt like a series finale. We don’t need more seasons.
A: But still - the writers had a season 4 planned.
Man, so weird to be in the Daredevil writers room today, getting the news that we're cancelled. On the walls were an entire season 4 laid out - and it was so f*g cool. So many moments we wanted the fans to see... Sigh, this business.— Sam Ernst (@havensam) November 30, 2018
From a io9 interview with Daredevil writer Tamara Becher-Wilkinson: “When asked about what they were working on, and what fans are missing out on, Becher-Wilkinson wasn’t allowed to discuss any specifics “under penalty of death,” but she did reiterate what Ernst said: It would’ve blown fans away—much like the rest of Daredevil, a show she was proud to work on and whose legacy she hopes continues, even as the story has come to an end.”
+ Q: I heard Marvel Studios doesn’t want to work with Marvel Television. Is that true?
A: We can’t 100% verify this information, but industry insiders and critics have spoken about some sort of feud between the two divisions at Marvel.
I should clarify. The Marvel shows for Disney+ are being produced by Marvel movie execs, who do not like or get along with the Marvel TV execs who made Dardevil et al. Technically, they COULD make a Luke Cage show a few years down the line. They just don’t want to.— Alan Sepinwall (@sepinwall) November 30, 2018
More questions and answers to come!