The ‘Into the Badlands’ panel was a bittersweet one as the cast and producers discussed the final season of the ground-breaking show. The series featuring diversity (on screen and off screen), beautiful locations, and good ‘ol fashioned Kung-Fu airs on AMC and is available for streaming on Netflix- which some hope will help revive it.
We sat down with Daniel Wu (Sunny), Orla Brady (Lydia), Emily Beecham (The Widow), Aramis Knight (M.K.), Ally Ioannides (Tilda), Sherman Augustus (Nathaniel Moon), Lewis Tan (Gaius Chau), and EP/Showrunners Al Gough and Miles Millar.
Here were some highlights from the press conference:
- Will there be a resolution for the series? Will fans be satisfied? Producers confirmed the show’s ending will create a complete story! The experienced team could tell there were changes in the wind before the cancellation was announced. There will be some doors still left open because the show’s world goes on, but the Pilgrim arc was always intended to be 16 episodes regardless. When the producing team found out about the cancellation, they were prepared. It won’t be a cliff hanger like the Shannara Chronicles!
- The show’s diversity both in front and behind the camera was highlight for the panel. Actor Sherman Augustus (Nathaniel Moon) mentioned that on set, you heard almost every language- including Gaelic!
- When it comes to ensuring diversity, intentionality is key! The producing team explained that from casting to crew, they made conscious efforts to create and maintain their diversity. This included training crew to put diverse background actors in all the shots, having production units from diverse backgrounds, and making casting descriptions very specific.
- The show is known for have strong males without promoting toxic masculinity. The Creating men who are a great display of masculinity without being toxic. Martial arts is the great equalizer for men and women. They were intentional about making the Master female. Lydia’s evolution is important.
- Aramis Knight loves doing wirework on set! Daniel said the actor likes the physical challenge and even used to get upset when they had to bring in a stunt double.
- What’s next in the evolution of Lydia? She has hopes that she’s finally found someone who sees her for who she is and not just an alliance. Sherman mentioned there are more twists and turns to come for Moon and Lydia!
- Aramis’ character, MK has inspired fans, particularly teens, to embrace all parts of themselves. He and Daniel Wu had no idea, but were humbled by the fact!
- Daniel Wu teared up while talking about Aramis’ time on set. He’s so proud and grateful to see him grow from a boy to a young man. He was grateful for the opportunity to mentor the young actor and hopes it will continue after the show too.
- What do the actors hope will be the show’s legacy? Orla hopes to see the show will be known for its authenticity- creating a show that looks like the diversity found in the real world and the value of honor and discipline. Daniel mentions that this is one of few shows where everyone can like something about- from strong female characters, to an Asian lead, even the martial arts elements. Finally, show producer Miles Millar believes that ‘Into the Badlands’ legacy is just beginning. Thankfully, the show can live on due to online streaming. You can get caught up and eventually watch the entire series on Netflix!