Word of a Sons of Anarchy spin-off featuring the Mayans began spreading back in 2014 before the original series even left the air (at the same time as rumors of a SoA prequel). The show officially went into development last May, a pilot was greenlit in December 2016, and the lead (JD Pardo) was cast in February, as was Edward James Olmos (who will play the lead’s father). Preliminarily, the series is about the struggles of Ezekiel “EZ” Reyes (Pardo), a prospect in the Mayan MC charter on the California/Mexico border. EZ seeks revenge after his “American dream was snuffed out by cartel violence.”
Everything seemed to be going along fine on Mayan MC until last month when word came down that it was being reshot and recast.
We weren’t given a lot of details at the time, but in the intervening month, we’ve gotten a better idea of what’s going on, largely from series co-creator Kurt Sutter himself, who explained the situation to Pop Culture:
“Ironically, I don’t know why I was surprised. It was the same situation we had on Sons, we had major recast and we reshot 95% of the pilot and that’s gonna happen again. What it does for me is it allows me to watch it and then go what didn’t work, what did work, and really do a big rewrite.
“So, now they’re just literally waiting for the script. We had the team all together. I’m not gonna direct it because if it gets picked up, we’ll slam right into production. So, my other [executive producer] Noberto [Barba] is gonna do the reshoots, so hopefully that’ll all happen in August/September and we’ll go into production the first of the year.”
Deadline later reported similar details (which were retweeted by Sutter), confirming that Sutter has been taken out of the director’s chair on the pilot. Directing reins will be handed over to veteran TV director Noberto Barba (Grimm, Preacher, Suits), although we still don’t know exactly who is being recast in the pilot. Sutter doesn’t seem to be bothered, however. “This was the process for SOA. Shows Fox/FX’s commitment to series. Allows me and Elgin to improve cast, script, and direction!”
We do know from Sutter, however, that several characters are being eliminated.
“I think the story will be the story, and literally most of the casting changes are elimination, meaning like we realized we were trying to tell too big of a story, so a lot of the casting stuff is losing characters, or introducing characters later on.”
Fans hopeful about the spin-off shouldn’t worry too much. The original Sons of Anarchy pilot was reshot and recast (Scott Glenn originally played the Clay Morrow role before he was replaced by Ron Perlman), and Sutter seems confident that The MC will eventually ride again:
We should have a more clear picture of the status of the series in September, after the pilot has been reshot.
(Via Pop Culture)