Jensen Ackles, who played Dean Winchester on the CW’s Supernatural for 15 years, isn’t quite finished enjoying his slice of the Supernatural pie and has decided to cut himself, and his wife Danneel Ackles yet another slice with their proposed prequel spin-off series titled The Winchesters.
Supernatural, the longest-running sci-fi genre series in the history of American broadcast television, was created by Eric Kripke and originated on the WB (which later became the CW). The CW made two previous attempts to launch a Supernatural spinoff with Bloodlines and Wayward Sisters, both of which were introduced as backdoor pilots and quietly never progressed any further.
Executive producers Jensen and his wife Danneel, who played Sister Jo, a faith healer who was possessed by the angel Anael in 5 episodes in seasons 13, 14 and 15 launched their company, Chaos Machine Productions last fall with an overall deal at Warner Bros. Television, the studio behind Supernatural which also is producing The Winchesters in association with Chaos Machine.
The Winchesters, which has a script commitment, is written/executive produced by another Supernatural alum, former co-executive producer Robbie Thompson. Thompson was on Supernatural for five years, rising to co-executive producer. He most recently served as co-executive producer on Netflix’s Cursed and is repped by Artists First and Mark Wetzstein.
The proposed show will follow the “epic untold love story of how John met Mary and how they put it all on the line to not only save their love, but the entire world” narrated by none other than Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles). Sam and Dean’s parents John and Mary were played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Samantha Smith on several episodes of Supernatural throughout the 15 year run.
The premise of Supernatural was that Mary was killed by a demon when Sam was just a baby which prompted John to become a “hunter” who then passes on his knowledge and skills to his sons Sam and Dean, who “carry on” the family business hunting vampires, ghosts, demons, angels, wendigos, werewolves, djins, and any other supernatural beings who create havoc in our world.
“After Supernatural wrapped its 15th season, we knew it wasn’t over. Because like we say in the show, ‘nothing ever really ends, does it?’” Jensen Ackles told Deadline. “When Danneel and I formed Chaos Machine Productions, we knew the first story we wanted to tell was the story of John and Mary Winchester, or rather the Supernatural origin story. I always felt like my character, Dean, would have wanted to know more about his parents’ relationship and how it came to be. So I love the thought of having him take us on this journey.”
In a bizarre twist, either a poorly attempted publicity stunt or a legitimate oversight on behalf of Ackles, co-star of 15 years, friend, and neighbor Jared Padalecki who played Sam Winchester and now stars and is executive producer of CW’s Walker, which was picked up for a second season, was unaware of this new Winchester project and claimed he was “gutted” when he heard the news via Twitter:
“This is the first I’ve heard about it.
He went on to clarify that he wishes the Ackles’ the best, but was disappointed he heard about it publicly on Twitter:
“Dude. Happy for you.
Wish I heard about this some way other than Twitter.
I’m excited to watch, but bummed that Sam Winchester had no involvement whatsoever.”
Of course, a Twitter storm erupted as fans were shocked and dismayed by the news and after his initial tweets, Jared had to take to Twitter again, thanking his fans for their support, but asking them to back off from the hate they were spewing towards the Ackles family:
Thank you for the love.
Please PLEASE don’t send any hate or threats.
I care deeply about everybody involved and would be in true misery if any of them were harmed or threatened.”
Finally, Padalecki tweeted that he and Ackles had spoken and things were good.
“@JensenAckles and I had a great talk, as we do often, and things are good. The show is early in the process with miles to go. We’ve traveled a lot of roads together, and sometimes those damn roads have bumps. Bumps don’t stop us. Once brothers, always brothers. #spnfamily“
It seems that while he was initially hurt when he discovered he wasn’t included in the project, Jared is a standup guy who wishes his friends nothing but success.
Jensen Ackles will next be seen in a high-profile new role as Soldier Boy, a Captain America-esque character ripped from the original Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson comics, on Season 3 of Amazon’s hit series The Boys.
He and Danneel are repped by Gersh, Management 360 and Ziffren Brittenham.
Joia DaVida reports on the entertainment industry in both Chicago and Los Angeles.