Joss Whedon Leaves New HBO Series The Nevers

Avengers and Buffy the Vampire Slayer director Joss Whedon is reportedly parting ways with his latest project. On Wednesday, Whedon announced (via a statement to CinemaBlend) that he will be stepping away from The Nevers, a television series that he was working on for HBO. In the statement, which you can check out below, Whedon says he is exiting the series due to the "level of commitment" and "physical challenges" that would be required to make the show amid the ongoing COVID0-19 pandemic. Whedon also says he is stepping away to "martial [his] energy" towards his personal life.

"This year of unprecedented challenges has impacted my life and perspective in ways I could never have imagined, and while developing and producing The Nevers has been a joyful experience, I realize that the level of commitment required moving forward, combined with the physical challenges of making such a huge show during a global pandemic, is more than I can handle without the work beginning to suffer," Whedon's statement reads. "I am genuinely exhausted, and am stepping back to martial my energy towards my own life, which is also at the brink of exciting change. I am deeply proud of the work we have done; I'm grateful to all my extraordinary cast and collaborators, and to HBO for the opportunity to shape yet another strange world. The Nevers is a true labor of love, but after two-plus years of labor, love is about all I have to offer. It will never fade."

The Nevers, which was first announced to be in the works in 2018, is a historical-sci fi hybrid set in the last years of Victoria's reign, London is beset by the "Touched": people — mostly women — who suddenly manifest abnormal abilities, some charming, some very disturbing. Among them are Amalia True (Laura Donnelly), a mysterious, quick-fisted widow, and Penance Adair (Ann Skelly), a brilliant young inventor. They are the champions of this new underclass, making a home for the Touched, while fighting the forces of… well, pretty much all the forces — to make room for those whom history as we know it has no place.

The series also stars James Norton, Tom Riley, Ann Skelly, Ben Chaplin, Pip Torrens, Zackary Momoh, Amy Manson, Rochelle Neil, Eleanor Tomlinson, Denis O'Hare, and Nick Frost.

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It is unclear at this point how much work needed to be done on the series, as principal photography reportedly started in July of 2019. The Nevers is currently targeting a 2021 release date on HBO.