John Cho has discussed Netflix’s decision to cancel Cowboy Bebop after one season.
The live-action adaptation of the 1998 anime series was released last November but was abruptly cancelled by Netflix three weeks later following negative reviews.
Cho, who played lead character Spike Spiegel, has since addressed the show’s end to The Hollywood Reporter where he recalled how production shut down for months after he tore his ACL while on set in New Zealand.
“I put a lot of my life into it,” Cho said. “I’d gotten injured shooting that show and so I took a year off because of the surgery and devoted myself to rehab, came back and finished the show.
“It was this huge mountain for me to climb, healing from that injury. I felt good about myself as a result. We also shot the show in New Zealand, so my family moved there. It was just a huge event in my life and it was suddenly over.
“It was very shocking and I was bummed. But I was very warmed by the response. I wish I could have contacted everybody and gotten hugs. You can’t do that now, but… I don’t know what this is. I’m mystified a little bit about how you can connect with people that you don’t know doing your work, but I won’t question it. I will value it and treasure it. I’m just really deeply appreciative that anyone would care. It’s stunning to me.”
In its first week of release Cowboy Bebop achieved 74 million viewing hours on the platform although the numbers dropped by 59 per cent in its next week.
A petition was launched by fans to revive the series following its cancellation, which received more than 145,000 signatures. Netflix, however, has stuck with its decision.
NME’s two-star review of Cowboy Bebop reads: “In Netflix’s update, the space and inertia so core to the anime are jettisoned for a pacy tempo that really doesn’t fit with the story. It turns Cowboy Bebop into just another show.”
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