What Jupiter's Legacy Star Josh Duhamel Thinks About Netflix Cancellation And Possibly Playing The Utopian Again

josh duhamel's utopian in jupiter's legacy

josh duhamel's sheldon sampson in the rough on jupiter's legacy

(Image credit: netflix press)

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Though it was developed with the idea of lasting multiple seasons and kicking off comic book giant Mark Millar's small-screen universe, Jupiter's Legacy wasn't really given much of a chance to kick anything off after its first season debuted on Netflix. The streaming giant cancelled the budget-breaking superhero drama less than a month after it debuted as a regular Top 10 entry in Netflix's daily rankings. Fans who were extremely disappointed by the cancellation news can take comfort in knowing star Josh Duhamel is right there along with you, and he's got ideas for how he'd like The Utopian to return one day.

While speaking with CinemaBlend to promote his other 2021 superhero-adjacent role as Harvey Dent in the DC Universe Animated Movie Batman: The Long Halloween, Part One - out on digital and Blu-ray/DVD on June 22 - Josh Duhamel shared his thoughts on Jupiter's Legacy coming to such an early and cliffhanger-filled conclusion, saying:

You know, it’s just disappointing, I’m not gonna lie. We all worked very hard on that and promoted it very hard and thought we made a really good show, and I think [with] the audience, it performs so well and continues to do really well. We were a little bit surprised by it not getting renewed. For me, I never saw it going more than two or three seasons because that would have fulfilled whatever graphic novels were written for it. And that second season was going to be so much fun because it had the makings of this modern tragedy where some pretty dark stuff happens to The Utopian. And I was excited creatively to do that. I’m not sure the reasoning for it. I’m grateful for the opportunity to have done it, and I think we all did a really good job on it. But this is the way of the business, you take your lumps. Just because you got something great, it can be undone. You have to kind of roll with it. It’s disappointing.

Critics weren't overly glowing about the methodical nature behind Jupiter's Legacy's storytelling, which possibly played a part in Netflix's cancellation decision, along with the many behind-the-scenes issues and financial problems. But from a fan perspective, as well as an actor perspective, there have been few cancellations more baffling than that of Jupiter's Legacy, considering how much of Season 1's storytelling was built to pay off in a second season. And even if he's not a fan of filming superhero brawls, it sounds like Josh Duhamel was as excited about seeing Utopian's future rivalry with his brother Walt as much as viewers were, not to mention his crumbling relationship with son Brandon. But while The Union adhered to a strict code not to proceed with lethal intentions, Netflix killed all those storylines prematurely.

josh duhamel's utopian in jupiter's legacy

There is a glimmer of hope to hang onto, however. Netflix is still going full steam ahead with its Mark Millar partnership, and buttressed its cancellation announcement with the notion that all of his comic adaptations - including the upcoming Supercrooks and The Magic Order - will all be part of the same universe. So it's entirely feasible that Jupiter's Legacy plot points and characters could be referenced in other shows. And considering Mark Millar and artist Tommy Lee Edwards only just released the first issue of Jupiter's Requiem, the source material's final arc, there's a measurable chance that Netflix execs could decide to return to the multi-generation superhero saga again in the future in some format.

Having lived with the cancellation of Jupiter's Legacy for a short while, Josh Duhamel has accepted its fate, but he hasn't fully turned away from the idea of playing The Utopian again in the future. In his mind, however, he'd prefer to wrap up the TV show's narratives through a feature-length project, as opposed to something more episodic. In his words:

I don’t know if we’re ever going to see him again. Though it sure would have been fun to do that second season. I think they should do a feature, just encapsulating what would have happened in the second season. Not do the full season, but just a feature. . . . I don’t know if they’ll do it or not, but all those costumes are ready to go. And they weren’t cheap, I’ll tell you that much.

Taking into account that the initial eight episodes were rumored to have cost upwards of $200 million dollars after all was said and done, Jupiter's Legacy probably has a far better chance of returning to audiences via a 100-minute close-out feature rather than anything more extensive. At this point, it will all come down to how long fans can keep Jupiter's Legacy in Netflix's Top 10, as well as how vocal the fandom can get on social media. Here's a tip, though: don't follow Hutch into oxygen-free vaults before trying to get more vocal. It's not gonna work.

With his upcoming feature opposite Jennifer Lopez Shotgun Wedding on the way, Josh Duhamel can currently be heard as the iconic comic character Harvey Dent in Batman: The Long Halloween Part 1, which will be available via all home entertainment outlets on Tuesday, June 22, with Part II hitting digital on Tuesday, July 27, and Blu-ray/DVD on August 10, right in the thick of the 2021 Summer TV season.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.