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The Cancelled Projects of Joss Whedon

Joss Whedon

This article is all about the Joss Whedon projects that never made it off the ground, for one reason or another. Now, some of these might actually come together, but most of them are probably dead.

The Servant Girl

In Comic-Con circa 2007 Joss Whedon announced he would be making a musical with Summer Glau called The Servant Girl. Details of this are sketchy, but it seems to be similar to the idea eventually realised in Dr Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, only with ballet. It would be great to see Summer Glau in something cool again and it would be just as cool to see Whedon indulge his independent spirit once again. At least until it’s time for The Avengers 2.

Chance of Revival: Very slim. Though there is no reason for this not to happen, too much time has elapsed to suggest it will.


In the same Q&A session, Whedon announced that they were going ahead with Ripper, another spin-off from Buffy The Vampire Slayer. The show would have been set in England and would have followed the earlier years of Buffy’s Watcher, Giles. It was to be produced by the BBC, but copyright issues meant it was a no go.

Chance of Revival: Miniscule. It has been over five years since the plans were announced and this is a big project to go back to. This, coupled with the copyright issues mean this is deader than the suture watcher’s slayer’s slayees, or vampires if you want to put it more simply.

Buffy: The Animated Series

Buffy in cartoon form. A cash cow based on an already existing franchise. Everyone would want it, right? Wrong. Inexplicably they could not find a buyer for it. The reasons given stem from financial to creative differences, but in the end no-one wanted to take it.

Chances of Revival: None. The time has passed, Whedon himself has given up on the idea long ago and the show is already continuing in comic book form so there isn’t really any room for it.

Spike: The Movie

Noticing a theme here? This Buffy spin-off never got as far as Ripper and last year James Marsters who portrayed the titular character announced he was too old to play an immortal.

Chances of Reviival: None. Too much time has passed, it was never too developed and the main actor has no interest in doing it. Could it get any more cancelled?

Wonder Woman

Someone must have lost their job for this, if not their head. After getting stuck in production hell for a good couple of years, Warner Brothers finally decided that Joss Whedon was not the man to bring this strong female superhero to the big screen.

Chance of Revival: Dead. Despite raking in over $1.5 billion at the box office with superhero movie The Avengers, they are unlikely to get Whedon back into this one. Not least because of his three year production deal with Marvel.


This was the big one, the one that was kept under wraps for a long time. All has gone quiet on this front it seems. But with the success of Cabin in the Woods, Whedon might finally get this done, or at least spill (some of) the beans.

Chances of Revival: Fair to none already complete, depending on your perspective. It may very well be that this mutated into Cabin in the Woods, which is makes sense given the sparse description and the apt title. On the other hand, it could be to Cabin in the Woods as Alien: Resurrection was to Firefly, ie essentially a dry-run before getting the real thing bang on.

Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog 2

Following the success of the original, this is probably the one fans want to see the most. Despite having killed off one of the main characters (as per usual), Penny will still likely appear in one form or another.

Chances of Revival: Very high. There has been constant chatter of it, from both fans, Joss and everyone else involved. There are no financial restraints or copyright concerns. The only issue is finding the time between everyone’s busy schedules.


6 thoughts on “The Cancelled Projects of Joss Whedon

    • I’m not 100% sure, but I don’t think so. As far as I understand the comics were already in production when this was being pitched and by season 8 (the first series in comic book form) too much would have changed to include them.

      I think there were 5 episodes of the animated series written in one form or another and it is possible that some of the ideas were placed into the comic books, though I’ve no idea if that was the case.

      Either way, I think it is safe to say the idea was to have the comics and the cartoon running at the same time, though telling different stories and the one did not spawn the other.

      • Huh. That’s interesting – as far as I’m aware, the comic books follow on from the live action series’ continuity?
        Maybe the plan was for the animated series to start again from the beginning (though obviously peeling off in different directions)?

        • The comics started when the show was still running and not all of those are considered to be canon.

          Series 8 and 9 are definitely canon.

          The animated series was going to be set during season 1. It was to tell additional stories rather than rebooting.

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