Willow, the Disney+ fantasy series based on the 1988 movie, has found a new director for its pilot.
Jonathan Entwistle, known for the well-regarded series The End of the F***ing World and I Am Not Okay With This, has been tapped to direct the pilot for the show that is set after the events of the film.
Jon M. Chu (Crazy Rich Asians) was due to direct the pilot and executive produce but announced Jan. 11 that he was stepping away due to scheduling concerns and an upcoming baby due in the summer.
Entwistle is also exec producing and now joins executive producers and co-showrunners Jonathan Kasdan (Solo: A Star Wars Story) and Wendy Mericle (Arrow). Kasdan wrote the pilot.
“With its epic world of swords, sorcery and adventure, Willow captivated and influenced so many,” said Entwistle in a statement. “I’m excited to be going on this journey and working with Jon and Wendy to create something that is both deeply rooted in that original film and also a fresh, funny and charming addition to the beloved story. To be able to play within the world so painstakingly crafted by Ron back in '88 is a dream come true for me."
The series returns Warwick Davis to the title role of Willow Ufgood, the heroic apprentice Nelwyn sorcerer of the original film. Ellie Bamber and Cailee Spaeny are among the new additions.
The production begins shooting this spring in Wales.
The series will be executive produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Michelle Rejwan, Jonathan Kasdan, Wendy Mericle, Roopesh Parekh, Ron Howard and Imagine Television, with Hannah Friedman as co-executive producer. Additionally, Bob Dolman will serve as consulting producer with Julia Cooperman as producer.
Entwistle developed End of the F***ing World, acting as the series’ main director as well as executive producer, and he co-created, wrote and directed the recent series I’m Not Okay With This. Both series were praised for their writing, with the former winning a Peabody and a BAFTA TV Award. He was also recently working on engineering and shepherding the next series of screen adaptations of Power Rangers, the colorful Hasbro superhero property.
Entwistle is repped by CAA, Grandview and Jackoway Austen.