The future of the A:TLA adaptation is in a perilous position. While the departure of DiMartino and Konietzko doesn’t mean the show will be bad, it does leave fans in a much more uneasy state than before. However, the creative differences between the duo and Netflix do pose an interesting discussion on the nature of the adaptation.
Now, Netflix has released a statement (via Variety) regarding the departure of DiMartino and Konietzko. While the spokesperson expressed sadness at the duos’ exit, they still have high hopes about what their creative team has been working on. The statement reads
“We have complete respect and admiration for Michael and Bryan and the story that they created in the Avatar animated series. Although they have chosen to depart the live action project, we are confident in the creative team and their adaptation.”
With DiMartino and Konietzko implying in the past that they wanted to create something new with this adaptation, the push back from Netflix might have been about making a more straightforward remake. Given the enormous success of the original cartoon on Netflix, a direct adaptation of the source materiel that doesn’t really change anything would still probably be successful. If Netflix’s intention is to create as direct of an adaptation as possible, their confidence in the live-action Avatar: The Last Airbender isn’t unfounded, even with the unfortunate departure of DiMartino and Konietzko.