SANTA MONICA, CA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Actor Val Kilmer attends the 23rd annual Simply Shakespeare benefit reading of "The Two Gentlemen of Verona" at The Eli and Edythe Broad Stage on September 25, 2013 in Santa Monica, California.  (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
Movies - TV
Val Kilmer Not Returning For The New Willow Series Was Never An Option
Disney+ is reviving "Willow," another '80s nostalgia flick, from its peaceful resting place in the Walmart five-dollar DVD bin. Its new life will take the form of an episodic adventure in the same fashion that both Marvel and "Star Wars" found a second, serialized wind.
Warwick Davis is set to reprise his role as Willow Ufgood, and fans of the original fantasy movie know that there is no “Willow” without Val Kilmer’s Madmartigan. Jonathan Kasdan who is developing the new TV series, said that Kilmer’s health was immediately taken into consideration.
"I approached Val the moment there was any momentum around this. I told him instantly that I wanted him to be a part of the story,” said Kasdan. Unfortunately, COVID-19 prevented the actor from flying to Wales for the project.
Writing Madmartigan out of the script was still out of the question, though. Kasdan said, “It seemed too sad to all of us [...] that Madmartigan was dead.” Subsequently, the story of the series was molded to protect Kilmer’s health — and he makes an appearance by the end of the season.