Marvel Terminates Overall Deal With ‘Helstrom’ Showrunner

Is The Marvel Series Doomed For Just One Season?

The writing may already be on the wall for Hulu’s Helstrom series, the last live-action TV show produced by Marvel TV before Kevin Feige took full control. THR reports that overall deals have been terminated with The Punisher showrunner Steve Lightfoot and Helstrom‘s Paul Zbyszewski, due to belt-tightening caused by the global pandemic.

Lightfoot’s case isn’t really surprising. He served as showrunner for two seasons on Netflix’s The Punisher before that show was canceled in 2019. He doesn’t have much of a relationship with Marvel beyond that.

Zbyszewki is interesting, though, because his relationship with Marvel stretches back further as an exec-producer on Agents of SHIELD. However, he is also the guy behind the upcoming Marvel series, Helstrom, which managed to complete production before the coronavirus shut everything down. As the final show from former Marvel TV boss Jeph Loeb (all of the others such as Ghost Rider and Howard the Duck were canned) it’s always looked like a target was on Helstrom and that it may only last a single season. This move to end Zbyszewski’s deal seems like a move in that direction.

As for how Marvel can unilaterally terminate contracts like this, it all comes down to the “force majeure” clause, which grants “studios increased latitude to make decisions that are motivated by an unforeseeable incident like the novel coronavirus.”

Travis Hopson has been reviewing movies before he even knew there was such a thing. Having grown up on a combination of bad '80s movies, pro wrestling, comic books, and hip-hop, Travis is uniquely positioned to geek out on just about everything under the sun. A vampire who walks during the day and refuses to sleep, Travis is the co-creator and lead writer for Punch Drunk Critics. He is also a contributor to Good Morning Washington, WBAL Morning News, and WETA Around Town. In the five minutes a day he's not working, Travis is also a voice actor, podcaster, and Twitch gamer. Travis is a voting member of the Critics Choice Association (CCA), Washington DC Area Film Critics Association (WAFCA), and Late Night programmer for the Lakefront Film Festival.


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