Joe Locke’s WandaVision spin-off Agatha renamed (again) and pushed back by nearly a year 

A composite image of Kathryn Hahn as Marvel's Agatha Harkness and Heartstopper star Joe Locke

Marvel’s eagerly anticipated WandaVision spin-off starring Heartstopper’s Joe Locke has been renamed, and its release date pushed back by almost a year.

Previously titled Agatha: Coven of Chaos, the series has now been renamed Agatha: Darkhold Diaries. It’s the second time the series has undergone a name change, too. Up until July 2022, the series was billed as Agatha: House of Harkness.

The series was originally supposed to drop on streaming service Disney+ this winter, but according to The Hollywood Reporter, it will now not be available until early autumn next year. 

According to the publication, the altered release date is down to the ongoing Hollywood actors’ strike, which began back in July and show no signs of ceasing any time soon.

Alongside Agatha: Darkhold Diaries, other huge TV and film titles have been impacted by the actors’ strike, including Stranger Things, Challengers and Wicked.

The Emmy Awards, originally scheduled to air later this month, have also been pushed back to January 2024. 

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While Agatha: Darkhold Diaries had wrapped up filming before the Hollywood strike began, the terms of the walkout also restrict film promotion, with actors unable to promote or discuss their work. 

Darkhold Diaries will see the Locke, 19, move away from Charlie Spring, the beloved Heartstopper character that made him a household name and acquired him a fervent fanbase. It’s his first acting role outside of the massively successful Heartstopper world.

The Heartstopper season 2 soundtrack is here.
Joe Locke and Kit Connor in Heartstopper. (Netflix)

He’ll star alongside The White Lotus’s queen of deadpan Aubrey Plaza, Broadway legend and staunch LGBTQ+ ally Patti Lupone, and That ‘90s Show star Debra Jo Rupp.

Kathryn Hahn will reprise her WandaVision role as the show’s lead, Agatha Harkness.

Based on the Marvel comics, the spin-off series is thought to continue the events that unfolded at the end of WandaVision, where Agatha lost a battle against fellow witch Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olson), and became trapped in the mundane, suburban neighbour persona she had adopted at the beginning of the series.

Agatha: Darkhold Diaries will likely show if and how she breaks out of the spell Wanda had put her under.

While little is currently known about Locke’s role in the series, he’s previously teased that it will include “some camp” and will “resonate” with the LGBTQ+ community.

“The show is about misunderstood people and people who are alienated by their society for reasons that they can’t control,” he told Entertainment Weekly earlier this year. “I think that resonates a lot with the queer community.”

He also expanded on how he landed the part in the first place, explaining that it was down to his sheer perseverance.

“With Marvel, I was very determined to get the part. I had never been that determined about anything before, which meant that I was putting my energy into it. But I also think I’ve been one of the luckiest people in the world in the past two years.”

While fans are thrilled that Locke has landed his first major role post-Heartstopper, some have expressed irritation at the show’s delay.

“That’s in a whole year, I’m crying,” one person shared on social media, while another simply declared: “I want it now!”

WandaVision is available to watch on Disney+ now.

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