Image Credit: Disney+
Time to consult the bones! For nearly four decades, fans of the beloved George Lucas epic, Willow, waited patiently for a return to their favorite fantasy world. Their wish was finally granted on November 30, 2022 when the highly-anticipated sequel to Willow hit Disney+ in the form of a brand new series.
The classic 80’s film starred Warwick Davis in the titular role, who goes out on a quest to deliver a young child he found near his village and protect her from an evil sorceress who wishes to kill her over an evil prophecy. The 2022 series picks up 17 years later and has delighted fans with a solid continuation of the 1988 movie, and ends on two major cliffhangers hinting that there’s much more in store for fans.
But what news of season 2 of Willow? Given a certain end of credits scene, is the next season certain? Here’s what we know!
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‘Willow’ Season 1 Review
The story of the series takes place nearly 17 years since Queen Bavmorda was defeated. The Queen’s daughter, Sorsha, now rules the kingdom and has since become mother of twins Kit and Airk and the guardian of Elora. Her husband, Madmartigan, is missing in action, which forces a new group of unlikely heroes to band together when Sorsha’s son, Airk, is kidnapped by the Crone, a powerful sorceress who serves as the leader of the Order of the Wyrm, a mysterious evil entity.
Sorsha send her daughter Kit, her husband’s former squire Boorman, Jade, a knight-in-training – and Kit’s more-than BFF – and Prince Graydon off to find Willow, her past friend and sorcerer to lead the quest to save Airk. Along the way, it’s revealed they have another joining their party: a kitchen maid named ‘Dove’ who is in love with Airk. However, by the time the party meets up with Willow, her true identity is revealed: She’s Elora Danan, future Empress of Tir Asleen, hidden away for all of these years for her own safety.
Ruby Cruz as Kit with the cast of ‘Willow’ (Disney+)
Together, they must face all manner of creatures and strange lands to save Airk, as well as train Elora to be the most power magic-wielder of all-time, if they’re ever to save the world from the Wyrm.
‘Willow’ Season 1 Ending Explained
After literally jumping off the edge of the world, Kit and Elora finally find Airk – or have they? As predicted, he’s been possessed by the Crone and now wants Kit and Elora to come along for the ride, with promises of getting all their hearts may desire. For Kit, that means freedom to live the life she dreams, having adventures with Jade and not having to be the good little princess; for Elora, it means not having the responsibility of the world heaped onto her shoulders, to marry Airk and be normal. The Crone’s tempting plan almost succeeds – until Kit hears the voice of her father, Madmartigan, just as she did back in the cave with the trolls. He reminds her what he fought for and what she must fight for too. However, before she can get to Elora, she’s frozen in stone by the Crone. Then, just as Elora is about to get everything she’s ever wanted, she remembers who she really is and prepares to fight – and she’s not alone.
Turns out, Graydon, Boorman, Willow and Jade all take the same leap of faith to help their friends – and thus the final battle begins! Elora faces off with the Crone, while Boorman and Willow work on taking down her minions. Jade and Kit become occupied with battling Airk, who is desperate to defend his new Queen. Kit’s helped along by finally being bestowed the powerful Kymerian cuirass by Boorman, as she is the true person to wear it.
Ellie Bamber as Elora in ‘Willow’ (Disney+)
Just as it seems Elora is about to fail against the Crone, Graydon steps in to defend her. He almost succeeds, but the Crone is just too powerful, and sadly, obliterate him to dust, before also snapping Elora’s wand in two. Fueled by her anger, Elora gets a second chance at the Crone, and this time, takes her down. However, with her dying breath, she infects Airk with her power, who turns on his friends as quickly as you can say Nockmaar.
In the end, Kit overpowers him and is prepared to kill him to save Elora, but with Willow’s magic, she’s able to reach him through their sibling connection and cast the evil out of him. With Airk himself again, the group prepare to journey back home, knowing full well that the Wyrm is still waiting to find a way to take over.
And what a plan she has to do just that. In the final moments, we find Graydon is alive, but being propositioned by the Wyrm, who looks identical to Elora, to stand by her side as she ramps up her plans to take over the world
How Many Seasons Of ‘Willow’ Will There Be?
It’s a fair question – especially considering how the first season ended. At the beginning of each of the eight episodes of Willow, a book opened to the ‘chapter’ of the story. While an incredibly beautiful, visual way to kick off the story, after the credits rolled on the season 1 finale, viewers watch as the book is closed and returned to the shelf. In doing so, it’s revealed that the book placed back is titled ‘Volume 1’. Right beside it are Volumes 2 & 3, hinting that the new story of Willow is meant to be played out over three seasons.
However, as of February 2023, there has been no official announcement that the show has been renewed. Still, to hear it from. Ron Howard, director of the original film and EP of the series, the outlook is good. “There’s always been a hope and a plan for more seasons. There’s certainly more story to tell, but there’s nothing concrete that I can comment on right now,” Ron Howard told THR. “From a creative standpoint, everybody is energized. Everybody loved working on Willow. It felt like it found its voice and its footing, so we’re just standing by.”
Will Val Kilmer Be In The ‘Willow’ Series?
Part of the delight of the Willow series was seeing so many of the original stars return. Aside from Warwick as Willow, Joanne Whalley also returned as Queen Sorsha, as did Kevin Pollak as Rool, a brownie and former travel companion of Willow and Madmartigan. But what of Madmartigan, played by the handsome Val Kilmer , and Joanne’s real life husband, in the 1988?
Val Kilmer In ‘Willow’ movie in 1988 ( MGM/courtesy Everett Collection)
Well, the plan was for him to return, making a cameo in the first season, just as he did in Top Gun: Maverick. While Madmartigan still played a big part in the Disney+ sequel series, Val was not able to appear as he wanted to do due to Covid protocols. Given his longtime battle with throat cancer, this meant it was not safe for Kilmer to travel for filming. The show managed to work around that by enlisting the help of his son, Jack. Twice during the show, Kit hears the voice of her father Madmartigan, which actually was Val’s son, performing the role has his father would have.
“We actually recorded with Val and we used his performance as a guide track,” Willow showrunner Jonathan Kasdan told Decider. “Then Jack was given Val’s performance to listen to and then copy what his dad had done in terms of you know, the performance elements of Val’s thing. Then to have him standing there on set — duplicating his father as he’d done for the documentary they made — it was surreal and very emotional because you know, Val is such an intrinsic part of the family. He’s such a critical element of Willow. He’s still with us as a supporter and an advocate and a counselor in terms of how to keep this character alive. And I think [he] would very much like to return to the screen if opportunity allows.”
Therefore, if all goes well, and a second season is greenlit by LucasFilms & Disney, there could be hope that Val could return!
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