Marvel TV head and The Defenders producer Jeph Loeb says a second limited series team-up is not yet off the table.
“It doesn’t mean that it’s off the table. And it doesn’t mean that it even has to be with the original characters that were in the first Defenders.”
That first eight-episode miniseries teamed blind vigilante Daredevil (Charlie Cox) with troubled superhuman investigator Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), Harlem one-man-army Luke Cage (Mike Colter) and martial arts master Iron Fist (Finn Jones), who temporarily banded together to thwart the machinations of the shadowy Hand organization.
Loeb hinted The Defenders could adopt the revolving door roster of the original comic books, which saw Sorcerer Supreme Doctor Strange tap a continually evolving lineup that included superheroes like Hulk, Namor the Submariner, and the Silver Surfer.
“There are lots of Avengers, and through that, you should be able to ascertain that there may be lots of Defenders,” Loeb said.
“No one at any time referred to them as ‘The Defenders’ — they didn’t wear a little ‘D’ on their belts, and they didn’t go to a building that had a big ‘Defenders’ [sign] in the air. They were four mismatched heroes who were joined by a lot of the other heroes that are in the stories that we do on Netflix, but that was that particular story.”
Some fans were incensed last week when producers Netflix, who exclusively stream the TV-MA corner of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, rebranded the official Defenders Facebook page to NX — a new one-stop shop for genre projects like sci-fi and superheroes.
Many took the clandestine change as a sign Marvel would not be moving forward with a second go at The Defenders.
Loeb’s most recent comments echo what he said in June, when he told inquiring fans a followup was “not in the plans right now, but you never know!” Ritter suggested the series would remain a one-off in a past interview with Vulture:
“I don’t think we are doing it again,” she said. “It was never intentioned to do it again, but, you know, if I was given another opportunity, I would.”
Other popular characters that could one day make their own makeshift and temporary superhero team include the Punisher (Jon Bernthal), Misty Knight (Simone Missick) and Colleen Wing (Jessica Henwick).
Loeb, when fielding a question about the future of Iron Fist, said the Marvel TV side is beholden to the networks — in this case, Netflix — meaning it’s the streaming giant who has to give the green light on another Defenders miniseries.
“Unlike the movie studio, which can announce a Captain Marvel movie will be out in 2019, the television studio will always be beholden to our networks, and so if our networks want another season of Iron Fist, we’re ready to go,” he said. “We’re just waiting for the answer.”