In an open letter, Michael Dante DiMartino said that he and co-creator Bryan Konietzko are “no longer involved with the project” and dropped out in June “after two years of development work”.
He said that, despite Netflix bosses assuring them it was committed to upholding the pair’s vision of the adaptation, “unfortunately, things did not go as we hoped”.
DiMartino continued: “Look, things happen. Productions are challenging. Unforeseen events arise. Plans have to change.”
He added that, while he would usually adapt to these changes, he knew it was “time to cut [his] losses and move on”.
DiMartino told fans it could be an adaptation “many... end up enjoying”, but that the series “will not be what Bryan and I had envisioned or intended to make”.
In response to the open letter, fans expressed their confusion and anger with Netflix on social media.
One person said they no longer have any hope in the adaptation, with another stating: “Bring back DiMartino and Konietzko and trust in THEIR vision, or we *WILL NOT WATCH* the live-action remake.”
Another fan agreed, writing: “If they’re not involved, I won’t be watching it at all.”
— esmia (@EsmiaMain)
Everyone watching #AvatarTheLastAirbender become one of the most watched Netflix series ever and one of the most watched series in all of the US, and the creators reward is watching the upcoming Live-Action adaptation be screwed with by Netflix so much that they leave production: pic.twitter.com/C4kZRpaEN8
— TRAFON (@RiseFallNick)
Complete agree. if they’re not involved I won’t be watching it at all
— Heather Velasquez (@HeatherVOcarina)
Since the cult animated show’s arrival on the streaming service in the US, it has become one of its most-watched licenced titles.
In reference to this, a viewer tweeted: “Everyone watching #AvatarTheLastAirbender become one of the most watched Netflix series ever and one of the most watched series in all of the US, and the creators reward is watching the upcoming Live-Action adaptation be screwed with by Netflix so much that they leave production.”
Avatar: The Last Airbender, which tells the story of 12-year-old Aang, was first broadcast on Nickelodeon for three seasons, from February 2005 to July 2008.
The live-action remake was announced in September 2018.