Two new shows from J.J. Abrams have been cancelled at HBO Max

And Keanu Reeves has something to do with it

J.J. Abrams
(Image credit: Frederick M. Brown / Stringer / Getty Images)

Two new TV shows from J.J. Abrams and the filmmaker's production company, Bad Robot, will no longer be going forward at HBO Max.

As reported by Deadline, Warner Bros. has passed on a television adaption of Constantine, based on the superhero by DC Comics. The project was cancelled at HBO Max following the news that Keanu Reeves will return as the titular character in a sequel to the 2005 movie. This is also being developed by Warner Bros.

The TV series was in development for over two years and with seven live-action DC series already broadcasting, this was the final nail in the coffin for Constantine. Set to be written by Guy Bolton, the series was described as a "darker reboot" that would take place in contemporary London alongside inspiration from the Hellblazer comic run. 

Another DC Comic adaption that won't be seeing the light of day at HBO Max is Madame X, again being developed by J.J. Abrams and Bad Robot. Angela Robinson was attached as showrunner and executive producer, however, for similar reasons to Constantine – namely, the number of DC shows on TV right now – Warner Bros. felt no need to progress the show any further. 

Both Constantine and Madame X are expected to be offered to other platforms over the next week or so, according to Deadline. So this means they might not be dead altogether. 

T3 has reached out to Warner Bros. for comment.

This isn't the first project from J.J. Abrams cancelled at HBO Max. Only last month was the planned animated series, Batman: Caped Crusader, forced to find a new home, even with The Batman director Matt Reeves onboard.  

Additionally, Warner Bros. has pulled back on other DC projects – most notably, spending $90 million on a Batgirl movie and then cancelling it. The company then continued to remove more than 30 titles from HBO Max's streaming library as well as cancelling more shows in the works, including a new one from Ellen DeGeneres

Matt Poskitt
Freelance Writer

Matt is a freelance writer for T3, covering news and keeping up with everything games, entertainment, and all manner of tech. You can find his work across numerous sites across the web, including TechRadar, IGN, GamesRadar, Tom's Guide, Fandom, NME, and more. In his spare time, Matt is an avid cinema-goer, keen runner and average golfer (at best). You can follow him @MattPoskitt64