‘Wonder Woman’ TV Series Rejected By All Major Networks

David E. Kelley's take on the Amazon superheroine is turned down and subsequently shelved.

Blair Marnellby Blair Marnell

'Wonder Woman' TV Series Rejected By All Major Networks

Back in October, Warner Brothers announced its intention to bring "Wonder Woman" back to television with David E. Kelley ("Ally McBeal") as the driving force behind the new adaptation. However, it now appears that the Amazon’s famed invisible plane has crashed before lift off.

Deadline is reporting that Kelley’s take on "Wonder Woman" has been shelved after failing to land a deal at any of the major networks. Although "Wonder Woman" would seemingly be an ideal fit for the CW as a replacement for "Smallville," the proposed series was considered too expensive for the network. Fox also passed outright, as did ABC.

But the interesting thing about ABC’s rejection is that Warner Brothers even brought "Wonder Woman" to that network at all. In 2009, ABC’s parent company Disney purchased Marvel Comics for $4 billion dollars; in part to acquire the rights to several of the most popular superheroes. ABC has already signaled that TV adaptations of "Hulk" and "AKA Jessica Jones" are already under way, leaving little room for a series owned by their direct rival.

NBC’s rejection was supposedly born out of its inability to greenlight a series with a large budget before its merger with Comcast is complete. CBS seemed closest to taking "Wonder Woman," but the executive team was reportedly split on whether to pick it up.

Kelley wrote the "Wonder Woman" script on spec after meeting with DC in September. And while the company seems to like his take on the classic comic book heroine, the "Wonder Woman" series will not proceed without the backing of one of the major networks. The report also states that Kelley’s script may be taken out to the networks again down the line.

Although "Wonder Woman" found success as a TV series in the ’70s with Lynda Carter in the title role, the character has struggled to break out of development hell ever since. In 2005, "Buffy The Vampire Slayer" creator was attached to write and direct a "Wonder Woman" feature film before ultimately walking away from the project two years later. Whedon is currently directing "The Avengers" for Marvel Studios.

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