Last week it was announced that Arrow's upcoming eighth season will be its last. The CW series will end its run sometime this fall. Since that announcement, cast, crew, and even fans have been vocal about how much the DC Comics-inspired has meant to them and one group of fans is putting their money where their mouths are in a fundraiser for a Times Square billboard send-off for the show.
On Monday, Arrow star Stephen Amell shared a tweet with fans noting the fundraising efforts as well as committing himself to a funds match of up to $10,000 to be donated to a charity of the fans' choosing.
I don’t know who started this. I will match it up to $10,000. The people that donate towards it get to pick the charity. ❤️ https://t.co/KQzAiOFdRj— Stephen Amell (@StephenAmell) March 12, 2019
As of the time of this article, it looks like Amell will be making that donation right at the top of his pledged amount. The fundraising campaign for the billboard is presently sitting at $10,170 -- pretty close to its $12,000 goal which appears to be a stretch goal to allow for a charitable donation.
It's a touching gesture from fans wanting to send off their favorite show in a grand way, but it's also worth noting that the fundraiser is called "OTA Forever" -- Original Team Arrow, meaning only Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards), John Diggle (David Ramsey), and Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell). It also leaves out Roy Harper (Colton Haynes) and Thea Queen (Willa Holland). The details of the campaign appear to confirm that the billboard is specifically to celebrate only those three main characters and not show itself.
There has been a bit of a divide in fans when it comes to Team Arrow since roughly the show's fifth season when Oliver, Felicity, and Diggle expanded the team to include Curtis Holt/Mr. Terrific (Echo Kellum), Rene Ramirez/Wild Dog (Rick Gonzalez), and Dinah Drake/Black Canary (Juliana Harkavy). The new additions to the team -- dubbed NTA for New Team Arrow -- haven't been as well-received by some fans, though despite “NTA” existing for roughly the same amount of time as OTA by the series’ end. The expanded team and characters have also been important aspects of the show and will likely remain so through the final season especially now that the team has reconciled and are working together on-books with the Star City Police Department.
The billboard being centered only a portion of the show's heroes won't be the first time fan fundraising efforts have been focused in such a way. In 2017, a group of Olicity fans -- fans who "ship" Oliver and Felicity as a couple -- raised over $7,000 to dedicate a bench in Vancouver's Stanley Park to the pairing with funds in excess needed for the bench being donated to ongoing environmental preservation efforts at the park. In an interesting twist, the bench sits in the park where Oliver and Felicity's wedding was filmed for the last moments of the Arrowverse crossover event "Crisis on Earth-X".
What do you think of the Arrow billboard fundraiser? Let us know in the comments below.
Arrow is currently airing its seventh season on Monday nights at 8/7c on The CW.
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