Arrow is shooting its last…well, arrow. The Stephen Amell-led comic book drama from executive producer Greg Berlanti and Warner Bros. TV is ending its run with a final, abbreviated eighth season set to air this fall.
Playing Oliver Queen has been the greatest professional experience of my life… but you can’t be a vigilante forever.
Arrow will return for a final run of 10 episodes this Fall.
There’s so much to say… for now I just want to say thank you.
— Stephen Amell (@StephenAmell) March 6, 2019
Arrow is ending its eight-season run this fall with a shortened 10-episode season that will air during the 2019-2020 broadcast calendar, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Arrow kicked off The CW’s sprawling “Arrowverse” in 2012 (check out our review of the series pilot for a blast from the past), spawning spinoffs including The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Supergirl, and the upcoming Batwoman pilot – which is heavily expected to be picked up to series in May. Executive producer Greg Berlanti and his producing partner Sarah Schechter have overseen the popular franchise (along with Black Lightning, which remains separate from the Arrowverse) from its inception, and even with Arrow’s departure, the shared universe it established shows no signs of disappearing any time soon.
CW president Mark Pedowitz addressed the future of the franchise at the Television Critics Association winter press tour in January, conceding that some of the Arrowverse series might be moving towards a natural conclusion: ” Things will age, and we want to get the next generation of shows to keep this CW Universe going for as many years as possible,” he told reporters. Arrow is apparently the first on the chopping block, which makes sense after we’ve spent the better part of a decade exploring the adventures of Oliver Queen and the ever-expanding roster of Team Arrow.
The decision for the Arrow ending came as the CW prepares to launch “the next generation of shows to keep The CW DC universe going for as long as possible,” CW President Mark Pedowitz told reporters in January at the Television Critics Association’s winter press tour. That new generation will be led by the highly anticipated Ruby Rose-starring series Batwoman.
Arrow showrunner Beth Schwartz and executive producers Berlanti and Marc Guggenheim said of the Arrow ending in a joint statement:
“This was a difficult decision to come to, but like every hard decision we’ve made for the past seven years, it was with the best interests of Arrow in mind. We’re heartened by the fact that Arrow has birthed an entire universe of shows that will continue on for many years to come. We’re excited about crafting a conclusion that honors the show, its characters and its legacy and are grateful to all the writers, producers, actors, and — more importantly — the incredible crew that has sustained us and the show for over seven years.”
Amell added on Instagram, “It’s been one hell of a run. I promise we’ll finish the way we started.”
Arrow ushered in a new wave of superhero TV shows that arguably paved the way for more grounded or adult-skewing adaptations of beloved comic book properties like Marvel’s Daredevil (which was cancelled following its most recent season) and Legion (which is ending following its upcoming season), not to mention DC’s unique twists on Gotham and iZombie.
Without the success of Arrow and its spinoffs, we probably wouldn’t have gems like DC Universe’s fantastic Doom Patrol or the utterly bonkers roster of Marvel adult animated series in development at Hulu, nor HBO’s ambitious take on Watchmen or FX’s interest in Y: The Last Man. In short, Arrow made superhero shows cool again, after decades of being dismissed as campy or childish after the teen angst of Smallville and the soapiness of Lois and Clark.
Arrow was renewed for Season 8 in January – along with new season pickups for the rest of the Arrowverse shows.