Willow: Behind the Magic is the perfect making-of documentary for the series

It’s become customary for Disney+ to release a making-of documentary after a series airs, and I’m thrilled about it. I’m always fascinated to see a behind-the-scenes glimpse at what went into the making of the show, and it’s led to some truly great explorations into it.

Willow: Behind the Magic was released this week as a behind-the-scenes look at Willow, and it was really unlike any of these Disney+ documentaries that came before it. Instead, it was a perfectly fitting tribute to the series, striking just the right tone to match the comedic adventure of the show.

As is typical of a project like this, there were glimpses at how the show was brought about through technology, sets, locations, and more. But the focus is almost exclusively on the cast, both old and new, who make Willow what it is. There’s exploration as to how the series came about, so long after the original film, and the newcomers to the cast who were really the secret behind its success. But then there’s Warwick Davis, of course, who returned as Willow Ufgood. And it’s that whole storyline that takes such comedic effect throughout this special.

There’s a lot of time spent on a supposed feud between Davis and the rest of the cast, whether it’s with the character Elora Danan (whom Davis is jealous of as the new star sorcerer) or the actor Christian Slater (who plays Allagash). It’s obvious that the actors, directors, and producers are all in on the joke as they produce the special, and there are plenty of one-liners and creative cuts that make it entertaining. I loved Davis talking about how he invented the colon, for example, claiming that he pioneered the technology to make sequels by keeping the name Willow, adding a colon, then a sub-title – and sharing some of his quite humorous pitches for sequels. Or maybe the best line of the whole documentary was Davis saying that, if they cast Slater, they’d have to call it “Disney-minus,” not Disney-plus.

It strikes a perfect tone that’s incredibly fitting for the series. Willow doesn’t take itself too seriously and is filled with humor and one-liners, yet it also has heart and adventure. This documentary captures that heart as well, exploring the new cast and how much they loved the project, how much they loved spending time together, and how much it meant to them. It has a lot of fun while having a lot of heart, just like the show.

So if you’re a Willow fan looking for a bit more after the first season of the series wrapped up, check out this half-hour special. You won’t be disappointed.

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