Joss Whedon Steps Away From HBO Sci-Fi Series THE NEVERS: "I Am Genuinely Exhausted"

Showrunner Joss Whedon has announced he will step away from HBO's upcoming sci-fi series The Nevers, citing the physical challenges of making the show during a global pandemic. Check out his statement.

The global pandemic has taken a toll on everyone and it affects each person differently. For Joss Whedon, creator of Firefly and Buffy the Vampire Slayer as well as director of The Avengers and Age of Ultron, it means stepping down from his role as showrunner for the upcoming HBO series, The Nevers

The Nevers was announced over two years ago with Whedon serving as showrunner for the HBO series. At the time, he described it as "the most ambitious narrative I've ever created."

It seems that working on such an ambitious project through a global pandemic has become too mentally and physical taxing on Whedon, who released the following statement to Cinemablend explaining his decision to leave The Nevers.

"This year of unprecedented challenges has impacted my life and perspective in ways I could never have imagined, and while developing and producing The Nevers has been a joyful experience, I realize that the level of commitment required moving forward, combined with the physical challenges of making such a huge show during a global pandemic, is more than I can handle without the work beginning to suffer.

I am genuinely exhausted, and am stepping back to martial my energy towards my own life, which is also at the brink of exciting change. I am deeply proud of the work we have done; I’m grateful to all my extraordinary cast and collaborators, and to HBO for the opportunity to shape yet another strange world. The Nevers is a true labor of love, but after two plus years of labor, love is about all I have to offer. It will never fade."

The Nevers marked Whedon's return to the small screen and was the first show he created since Fox's Dollhouse. It's unclear how far along the project has come under Whedon's creative direction, but HBO maintains the series will still premiere in summer 2021.

"We have parted ways with Joss Whedon. We remain excited about the future of The Nevers and look forward to its premiere in the summer of 2021," HBO said in a statement regarding Whedon's decision.

While it's unclear how big of an impact Whedon's departure will have on the project, the series still sounds incredibly intriguing. The plot synopsis reads:

"In the last years of Victoria’s reign, London is beset by the “Touched”: people — mostly women — who suddenly manifest abnormal abilities, some charming, some very disturbing. Among them are Amalia True (Laura Donnelly), a mysterious, quick-fisted widow, and Penance Adair (Ann Skelly), a brilliant young inventor. They are the champions of this new underclass, making a home for the Touched, while fighting the forces of… well, pretty much all the forces — to make room for those whom history as we know it has no place."

While it's unfortunate that Whedon had to drop out of the project, it's also important that he put his own mental and physical health first. Here's hoping Whedon can focus on himself for a bit and that The Nevers remains on track for a 2021 premiere.

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