'Charmed' Cast, Producers on Reboot Backlash: "Not Trying to Fill Anyone's Shoes"

'Charmed' (The CW)
Courtesy of The CW

 

The reboot is described as a fierce, funny and feminist take on the original series and centers on three sisters (Melonie Diaz, Sarah Jeffery and Madeleine Mantock) in a college town who discover they are witches. Between vanquishing supernatural demons, tearing down the patriarchy, and maintaining familial bonds, a witch's work is never done. The drama hails from the CBS Television Studios-based team behind Jane the Virgin Jessica O'Toole, Amy Rardin and Jennie Urman.

The CW's remake of Charmed will tell a new story when it premieres in the fall — a notion that hasn't sat well with some fans (and at least one star) of the original series.

The new show's cast and showrunners say they understand the deep connection people feel toward the prior iteration, but they hope to win viewers over once the new version sees the light of day.

Holly Marie Combs, who co-starred in the 1998-2006 WB series, planted her flag in the anti-reboot camp back in January, just after The CW ordered a pilot. 

"Charmed belongs to the four of us, our vast amount of writers, crews and predominantly the fans," Combs wrote at the time, referring to herself and co-stars Alyssa Milano, Shannen Doherty and Rose McGowan. "FYI you will not fool them by owning a title/stamp. So bye."

"We're only here because of that show. We were huge fans of the original, by the way," executive producer Jessica O'Toole said Monday at the summer TV press tour. "That show wrapped everything up so wonderfully — they all got their happy endings, and there were even glimpses of their future. We felt like it told a complete story."

Madeleine Mantock, who co-stars as one of the central trio of witches, said, "You can't help but be a little disappointed, because I think the script is fantastic. I think it's going to be incredible. I hope that maybe [Combs] can see it and like it, but on the other hand this was a [big] part of her life, and she's entitled to feel however she wants."

"We have tremendous respect for the foundation they laid," added castmember Ser'Darius Blain. "We're not trying to fill anyone's shoes."

The new Charmed follows a similar story to the original show, in that it's focused on three sisters (Melonie Diaz, Sarah Jeffery and Mantock) who are unlocking their powers as witches. It is not connected to the original series — at least not yet. Exec producer Jennie Snyder Urman says she's open to making a connection down the line — "There's always multiverses; you never know" — but there's been no contact yet with the earlier show's cast.

Charmed premieres Oct. 14 as part of The CW's expansion to Sunday night.