Disney+ Willow series dropped its first episodes on the streaming service on Wednesday, November 30th. The series is a sequel to the 1988 classic film Willow, which starred Warwick David (Willow) and Val Kilmer (Madmartigan). With Kilmers’ deteriorating health, the looming question of his absence from the series was discussed during the recent press junket for the show and explained by filmmakers. Check out Disney+’s Willow Val Kilmer’s Madmartigan absence is explained in this press junket interview.
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- Warwick Davis (“Willow Ufgood”)
- Dempsey Bryk (“Airk”)
- Ruby Cruz (“Kit”)
- Ellie Bamber (“Dove”)
- Tony Revolori (“Graydon”)
- Erin Kellyman (“Jade”)
- Amar Chadha-Patel (“Boorman”)
- Jon Kasdan (Writer and Executive Producer)
Disney+ Willow Val Kilmer’s Madmartigan Absence Explained
Val Kilmer’s character Madmartigan was such an integral part of the original Willow film, but with Kilmer’s deteriorating health these days, it appears the actor will be absent from the new Disney+ Willow series. The question arises: will his character be part of the new series? And if not, how will the show explain his absence? During the recent press conference for the series, Writer and Executive Producer Jon Kasdan shared that it was always the plan to include him, even if Kilmer could not personally come on set.
Kasdan shares, “The search for Madmartigan, and the question of what had happened to him was right at the heart of the story we were telling. We knew that it would be woven into this quest in a fundamental way to see where he was, what had become of him and what he’d given up.” He explains that this is particularly important for Ruby, Kit, and Dempsey’s character arcs and goes on to say, “that question sort of follows the whole season.”
It was planned for Kilmer to appear on set, but as Kasdan explains, “Val himself wasn’t able to come out to Wales and work with us, that’s where added this texture of a friend of Madmartigan’s, who could give us some clues about his whereabout and deepened the mystery around what happened to him, in a way that only actually extended the story we were already telling.” Kasdan admits that this route was “satisfying” and provided an opportunity to add a whole new element to the show that they didn’t expect.
As for the question of Madmartigan still being alive, Kasdan shares, ” Madmartigan is still out there. I have had many conversations with everyone involved, and our feeling is, he is out there to be found, should the day arrive. I think Warwick and I would both love to see him pick up that sword again.” To which Davis “absolutely” agrees.