We just learned that the plum role of Sabrina Spellman from Netflix’s new as-yet untitled series based on the Archie Comics’ ‘Teenage Witch’ has gone to ‘Mad Men’ alum Kiernan Shipka. One episode of the current second season of ‘Riverdale’ seemed to set up ‘Sabrina’ by emphasizing the spooky goings-on in neighboring town Greendale (Sabrina’s home town). In fact, the ‘Sabrina’ series was developed as a companion for ‘Riverdale’ on The CW, but fans were surprised when instead Netflix picked up the program, ordering two seasons right off the bat. Last month, we learned that part of the reason for the switch was because The CW was holding out hope for a revival of ‘Charmed’ and didn’t want two witch shows. Now CW president Mark Pedowitz offers a bit more insight.
“There was opportunity that Warners had that Netflix made them a two-season offer. We understood that, and I wish Roberto [Aguirre-Sacasa, creator and showrunner] and everybody really well as far as that goes. We have great development in Charmed and a number of other shows, so we’ll muddle through it.”
The CW now hosts five superhero shows, but apparently doesn’t have room for two witch programs. Oh well.
The reason for Netflix’s excitement about ‘Sabrina’ stems from the fact that once ‘Riverdale’ Season One became available on the streaming service, it blew up! Ratings of the second season are roughly double what they were on The CW when it first aired, thanks to viewers discovering it over the summer. It went on to win seven Teen Choice Awards (Choice TV Show: Drama, Choice TV Actor: Drama – Cole Sprouse, Choice Breakout TV Star – Lili Reinhart, Choice Breakout TV Show, Choice TV: Ship – Lili Reinhart & Cole Sprouse, Choice: Hissy Fit – Madelaine Petsch and Choice TV: Scene Stealer – Camila Mendes) and has its own line of merchandise available at Hot Topic.
Since ‘Riverdale’ indirectly set up ‘Sabrina’, is there still a chance that the shows could cross over, despite being offered on two different platforms?
Well, maybe, but Pedowitz sadly stated, “At the moment, there is no discussion about crossing over.”
‘Sabrina’ is expected to begin shooting in February, with the two seasons (ten episodes each) shooting back-to-back. No word yet on when it will be available to binge.
Are you disappointed that ‘Sabrina’ may exist in its own bubble devoid of references to the ‘Riverdale’ gang?
Source: Entertainment Weekly