Shadow and Bone fans have been campaigning for weeks requesting Netflix to renew the show for a third season, while their demand also includes a Six of Crows spin-off, the recently started WGA strike may put everything on hold.
Netflix is facing the heat as thousands of writers gathered outside the Netflix HQ in Los Angeles, yesterday. Writers went on Strike after talks with AMPTP failed, this Monday following six weeks of negotiations with Netflix, Amazon, Apple, Disney, Discovery-Warner, NBC Universal, Paramount, and Sony. This will be the first time Netflix facing a strike of this scale, however, the pandemic recently halted many Netflix production, so this may not be a new situation for them.
The recently started WGA strike which has legitimate demands is likely to affect many Netflix shows, and one among them is Shadow and Bone, which premiered with Season 2 on March 16th. The show hasn't been renewed for season 3 despite a decent viewership on the recently released season. But does this WGA strike affects the renewal of this show and fans' long-running request for the Spinoff or can they expect the good news?
I scanned through many interviews of Shadow and Bone showrunner Eric Heisserer and he doesn't seem to hint that Season 3 scripts were in the works, however in his interview with EW, he confirmed that he was busy with the writers' room for Six of Crows. He also went ahead and confirmed that the eight-episode scripts are phenomenal and he is really proud of his team for those. This means that even though it is not final, a draft version of the Six of Crows spinoff already exists, so if the show gets greenlit, they might be able to begin the work on it.
However, the same thing doesn't apply to Shadow and Bone Season 3, as the scripts are yet to be written. The strike is likely to delay that process even further as the show's writers may not be available. If Netflix and the producers try to replace those writers with new ones, the show's quality may get affected. Also, the streamer could face backlash from the actors and fans who are in support of the writers, who are out in the heat with a legitimate list of demands which affect their livelihoods. This is what happened in 2007 and 2008 when the WGA strike affected the quality of a lot of shows.
The risk of cancelation also looms over Shadow and Bone as the delay in kicking off production also increases the budget of the show. In many cases, Netflix pays the actors to make their schedule clear for the recurring shows. This also includes the time when the show is just in the development phase. With long delays between the seasons, it increases the budget by many folds.
It has happened at Netflix before with the cancelation of shows such as The Society and I Am Not Okay With This. Both the shows were already renewed but the pandemic delayed the production for a few months and extra safety measures increased the budget so much that Netflix thought it was better to cancel the show. If the strike continues for a period of more than 4-5 months, we might see such decisions again, and not just with Shadow and Bone, but also shows like Ginny & Georgia and The Watcher could have their future at risk.
However, among all this darkness, the Six of Crows spinoff may bring some light to the fans of Grishaverse. As it is yet to be greenlit, it won't be eating any budget during the strike and Netflix may be able to re-negotiate with the actors for the spinoff. However, fans waiting for a few weeks to hear some good news may now have to wait for a few months.
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