Something Wicked: Kiernan Shipka Lands the Leading Role of Netflix's New 'Sabrina' Series

Archie Comics

Get ready Riverdale fans: we just found your new favorite TV show. A new series based on the Archie Comics graphic novel The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is in coming to Netflix. Originally, the show was in development at The CW along with Warner Bros. Television, but don't worry, the show is still centering all around Sabrina Spellman.

Who will be playing Sabrina Spellman?

So who will be taking on the role of everyone's favorite witch? It's Kiernan Shipka, who you may know as Sally Draper from Mad Men. Executive producer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa took to Instagram to make the announcement.

Roberto will write the series, along with Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter, Jon Goldwater and Lee Toland Krieger. Roberto is the mastermind who created the comic book series and has brought us Riverdale along with Greg, so we know this show is coming from the best. Roberto even took to Twitter to share a first look at the possible opening scene of the pilot.

"We're all such huge fans of Kiernan's work that when we started talking about who this new incarnation of Sabrina could be, her name was on everyone’s wish list." Roberto said in an interview with Deadline. "This is a darker, more macabre version of Sabrina, and we're incredibly excited for people to see Kiernan make this iconic character her own."

Kiernan took to Twitter to announce the news and share the excitement with fans.

Before the announcement, there were a few actresses being thrown around, like Selena Gomez. She still has taken on acting roles in movies while she's managed to take the pop world by storm, and she did play the beloved wizard that is Alex Russo on Disney Channel's longest-running series of all time, Wizards of Waverly Place so she's no stranger to a little magic. But nope, not happening.

Selena even commented on the rumor herself and completely shut it down. Although she had never even heard the buzz until that exact moment, it's safe to say she probably won't change her mind. The Disney Channel alum said about fans wanting her to play Sabrina in a reboot, "I love that! That’s new information for me. No, that’s a rumor. I’ve done my magic enough." Looks like she has officially hung up her wand.

Another actress fans were hoping to see take on the part is none other than Dove Cameron. Although she just announced her new role on the ABC series Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, Dove has been vocal about how she would pretty much love to play this character – first planting the seed in our mind thanks to one little tweet.

Plus, she already is familiar with the Riverdale cast and the character in general.

"I love Riverdale, I know the cast. They were shooting that actually as we were shooting Descendants 2 so we're all like, 'Hey guys!' They were in the same hotel. I would definitely be open to it," Dove spilled in a new interview. "I love the character of Sabrina obviously. I was a huge fan of the original Archie Comics, that's like all I read when I was little. So I'd be open to it! I don't want to let down any fans or anything like that, but if they wanted me, I would go."

She then shared a photo of Sabrina from the Archie Comics on her Instagram. "No... We Modern Witches Believe Life Should Be a Ball!" the pic read, where we see Sabrina lounging on the couch with her beloved black cat.

Dove did a rather great job of not so overtly campaigning for the role, but she's too busy with other things anyway. But we gotta say – she happens to look so much like Sabrina in this particular photo.

What is The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina about?

The series is going to be more horror-based and much darker and will see Sabrina wrestling with her dual identity as half-mortal, half-witch, "standing against the evil forces that threaten her, her family and the daylight world humans inhabit," according to the official press release. UMM OKAY, that sounds super intense!

Let us all appreciate that Harvey is still Sabrina's boyfriend. Legendary. The series was originally set to be a companion series to Riverdale, but now that the show will be streaming exclusively on Netflix, it probably won't have any sort of crossover. Sources said to The Hollywood Reporter the show has been picked up for two 10-episode seasons by Netflix, so already tons to look forward to.

When is the show coming out?

We're not sure yet when the but the still-untitled series will be making its debut on Netflix but hopefully sometime in 2018.

Will Sabrina be appearing on Riverdale?

The character of Sabrina is a staple from the Archie Comics universe and there have been rumors she would be coming to Riverdale, since it was said that the character of Jason Blossom, Cheryl's twin brother who was killed by their father, had stopped on the Greendale side of Sweetwater River before he died. And Greendale is where Sabrina calls home. Now while The CW is known for epic crossover events with all of their superhero shows, since Sabrina is now heading to Netflix, we doubt she'll ever appear on Riverdale.

Will Melissa Joan Hart be involved in the show?

Melissa is forever known for playing this character on the classic sitcom, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, from 1996 until 2003.

Seriously, she was the coolest. And while she'll always be Sabrina to many of us, it doesn't seem likely she'll be reprising her role in this new show, as she said to Entertainment Weekly she doesn't even have an interest in any sort of reunion for her own show so no, she won't be appearing on this new series.

"I think it played out. You can’t end Sabrina better than you ended it — riding off on a motorcycle with Harvey to a No Doubt song, leaving one wedding to go to another. The ending of the show was perfect," Melissa said about the show's series finale. She does have a point there, that was a great ending to the beloved show. However, in a fairly recent interview, Melissa kind of contradicted herself. While she did admit to the fact that she wouldn't know who she would play in a reboot, getting back on set with all of the original cast members would be a dream come true.

She told Entertainment Tonight, "If we could go back to the set tomorrow, I would do it." Beth Broderick who played the role of Aunt Zelda said, "I think we would do it in a heartbeat if we could. We're family. I was really excited just to come and see these girls." And she even tweeted about the announcement that Kiernan will be taking on the iconic role of the teenage witch, which Kiernan was naturally so excited to see.

It was actually Caroline Rhea though, who played the role of Aunt Hilda, who commented on the new version of Sabrina the Teenage Witch and actually said she's "annoyed" by it all. She explained, "If they make Aunt Hilda mean, and, like, psycho? It’s, like, dark." She is scared of what will come of this new version of her character. Having played the part for so long, she feels she is connected to Aunt Hilda in a special way. She said, "I get called 'Aunt Hilda' every day and have since 1996, and I will answer to it happily."

Despite all of the drama with the new show, Melissa will never forget the fans of the original Sabrina. She said, "We have some of the best fans in the world. People feel like ... we were in their living room's every Friday night, or their college dorm room, you know, I feel like people, when they say that they grew up with us, that's, like, the best compliment we can get."

She believes that the new version will be "more millennial soap opera." While the original cast really does hope the new cast has the same success as they did, they really hope this new version won't ruin what they built for their characters over 20 years ago. Elisa Donovan who played the role of Morgan adds what she thinks their show really valued, "Our version was family friendly,” Eilsa said. “It's magical, it's female-driven. Everybody can watch it. It's smart and it's witty, and I feel really good about that. I keep saying that, but I really mean it."

Our fingers are crossed that this whole gang reunites maybe to watch one or two episodes of The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina together. We have a feeling their commentary would be absolutely perfect.

Will Salem be back?

If you watched Melissa's version of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, then you know her family's pet cat Salem is the true star. See, Salem is a witch who was sentenced to spend 100 years as a cat for trying to take over the world. Casual. But Salem always brought all the sass and served as a hilarious voice of reason to Sabrina, and her aunts Hilda and Zelda.

The character is still present in The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina comics, so we have high hopes he will be on this new show again, maybe not giving us the wise-cracks we're used to though. We'll just have to wait and see.


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This post was originally published on Sept. 20, 2017, and has since been updated.