Canceled Manifest could get an ending as a movie

Manifest cancelled
(Image credit: Peter Kramer/Warner Brothers)

Manifest is the latest TV series to get canceled without enough time for the folks behind the scenes to end the story appropriately. But while many shows just go away (RIP Glow, Good Girls and many more), this series may actually live to finish its narrative another day. 

Or at least that's the word of Jeff Rake, Manifest's creator. Rake has long spoken about why the series needed to last longer than it actually did, as he told the Television Critics Association (TCA) in 2020 that he "pitched it, as someone who didn't have a previous serialized show before, with a roadmap and clear chapters along the way," and that "the show wants to be six seasons." Unfortunately, NBC only let it run for three. 

Earlier this week, Rake tweeted out support for the fans of the show, stating "Manifesters! Your support is awe-inspiring. We’re trying to find a way to conclude the series. Could take a week, a month, a year. But we’re not giving up. You deserve an end to the story. Keep the conversation alive. If it works out, it’s because of YOU."

And parsing that language shows some good and bad news for the Manifesters in question. The good news is that Rake & co. clearly don't plan to let this show die. 

The bad news, though? Well, nothing's for sure yet, as it doesn't seem like Rake has any big plan. Note that he said "We're trying" and "If it works out,"

That tweet went live six days after a Deadline report claimed that Netflix passed on the opportunity to order the fourth Manifest season. This reportedly led Warner Bros. Television to stop looking for a new home for the show. 

Why would they stop? Supposedly the complicated world of digital rights and cast options would be difficult to get through if Warner looked for a new home. 

So, what is Rake going to do? Netflix still seems like the best option; one wonders if they could pitch Netflix on a movie that concludes the story, and not the three seasons that the series supposedly needs to tell its story. 

In fact, a movie is on the table. As Rake told Twitter Spaces...

"I'm going to hold out hope that maybe somebody will step up and help us finish that story – whether that means more episodes, whether that means a final kind of movie like they did with the show Firefly, or a lot of people have asked me 'write the book' and you know, that's a cool concept but [it's a major endeavour] and I'm going to think about it."

Maybe there's some avenue we don't see clearly from behind our monitors. In any case, the #SaveManifest hashtag will likely be used by the Manifesters looking to bring the series back.

Manifest is a mystery-box format series with a lot in common with Lost. But instead of focusing on the crashed plane, it told the story of a set of plane passengers and crew who reappear after the plane mysteriously disappeared and the world presumed them dead.

Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.