DC Universe’s Swamp Thing series from executive producer James Wan has reportedly been canceled after just two episodes, and the reasons why are rather odd.
Unlike DC Universe’s other live-action shows like Doom Patrol and Titans, Swamp Thing was intentionally kept separate from the small cinematic universe that’s taking shape on the streaming platform, the reason, which was curious when the show was first announced and even more so now that it’s been axed.
While many have speculated that Swamp Thing’s production woes were a reflection of the studio’s lack of faith that a series about a somewhat obscure character could be a successful draw for the relatively new service, the reason the series has been canceled seems to be rooted in a governmental budgeting error. Even though Swamp Thing takes place in Marais, Louisiana, the show was shot in Wilmington, North Carolina where it recently qualified for a multimillion-dollar funding grant from the N.C. Department of Commerce.
Out of the $44 million the state sets aside for each fiscal year for the grant program, Swamp Thing qualified for about $17 million, which covers season one’s production costs.
The problem, it seems, is that a recent communication error led North Carolina’s House of Representatives’ appropriations committee to believe that the grant fund had an excess to the tune of about $US67 ($96) million, which it did not. While the mistake’s since been caught, it means that overall, the state can’t offer nearly as much to production companies that choose to shoot there, meaning that studios would have to foot the bill themselves.
Unfortunately, these are the sorts of financial pitfalls that sometimes eat shows alive, but at the very least, it seems as if Swamp Thing’s first and final season will air in full on DC Universe over the course of the coming weeks.