For Netflix and TWC to produce a film to close out the story of their Marco Polo series
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On December of 2014, Netflix and The Weinstein Company released the first season of their 13th Century period piece television series Marco Polo. Created for the screen by John Fusco (writer of Young Guns, Hidalgo, and Thunderheart) and based on the world famous "Travels" of Messer Marco Polo, the series follows a young Polo as he navigates the Silk Road of China as a merchant with his father and uncle, ultimately destined to become a valued servant of Kublai Khan's Mongol Empire. Lavishly produced with painstakingly crafted authentic sets and ornately designed period correct costumes, the series is well known for being both an extraordinary rare peak into the world of Mongol ruled China and a strikingly beautifully filmed show. Filled with wonderful character driven arcs, twisting plot threads, and expertly acted performances, Netflix's Marco Polo is another creative win for the streaming service that already has a terrific reputation for churning out critically acclaimed shows such as House of Cards, Stranger Things, and Orange is the New Black. Marco Polo lasted 2 complete seasons, having just been cancelled by Netflix on December 12th, 2016, which left the series at a crucial narrative point with no closure for many of the established characters.
With this petition, I am looking to convince Netflix and the Weinstein Company that there is enough interest in reviving their Marco Polo series one last time, not as a costly episode based 3rd season but as a 1-shot feature length film made for Netflix that would give John Fusco and the creative team behind the series a chance to bring the show to a proper conclusion and send Marco Polo back home to Venice so that he can write his famous "Travels".
If you have never experienced the series, you can check out Marco Polo on Netflix at this link: https://www.netflix.com/title/70305883
Why bring Marco Polo back? There are a variety of reasons to bring Marco Polo back for one more adventure on Netflix, however I have limited this petition to the following 2 key reasons.
- Diversity/Representation. Racial diversity in big budget American produced cinema and TV series is a constant struggle for persons of color, with Asian actors being one of the most woefully under-represented. Marco Polo is rare majorly produced and distributed American TV series that is comprised of a cast that is primarily Asian, featuring: Benedict Wong (Prometheus, Doctor Strange), Joan Chen (The Home Song Stories, The Sun Also Rises), Chin Han (The Dark Knight, Independence Day: Resurgence), Tom Wu (Da Vinci's Demons, Spirit Warriors), Zhu Zhu (Cloud Atlas, Shanghai Calling), Rick Yune (The Fast and the Furious, Olympus Has Fallen), Olivia Cheng (Supernatural, Embrace of the Vampire), and Remy Hii (Neighbours, Better Man). Marco Polo is a series that not only showcases 13th century Mongolian Empire culture, it shines a much needed light on ancient Chinese/Mongol society which was one of the most advanced civilizations at that time in history. For many Western viewers, this is a great opportunity for them to see what ancient Mongol culture might have been like. It is also an opportunity for the film industry to continue to give Asian actors a high profile series that is actively marketed to and viewed by a mass American (as well as a broad international) audience.
- Closure, not only for Marco Polo but for the large cast of characters that define the world he is thrust into. Everybody knows that Marco Polo makes it back to Venice to write his extraordinary adventures into a book that would eventually become the single most significant travel book ever written, yet on the TV series Polo has not yet left the Mongol Empire to go home yet. The 1st and 2nd season of the show covered a huge amount of narrative content (the conflict with the remnants of the Song Dynasty, the Kuraltai, Ahmad Fanakati's uprising), and yet there is so much more that has been left unsaid. From a history perspective, we have yet to see Marco Polo become the Governor of Yangzhou, the attempted Mongol invasion of Japan, the decline of Kublai Khan's health, Polo's final harrowing mission for the Khan to transport a princess to India for an arranged marriage, and an explanation for the Mongolian boqta headdress found in Polo's possession at the time of his death many years after his travels through China. Also, it is not only Polo who deserves closure, as we still have not seen the ultimate fate of many of the show's main characters: Kublai Khan, Chabi (the Khan's wife), Jingim (the Khan's son), Byamba (the Khan's bastard son), Mei Lin (a fugitive concubine that Polo helped escape), 100 Eyes (a Buddhist monk on a mission), and Lotus (a Song Dynasty protector). There is a lot of story, character development, and tragic events that still need to be put on screen before the Netflix series for Marco Polo can truly be considered complete.
This petition exists because the story of Netflix's Marco Polo deserves to be finished. The amount of historical content not covered could easily make for an additional 2 or more seasons of the show. I understand that a third season of Marco Polo is not possible, the official cancellation by Netflix coupled with reports that the show was exceptionally costly to produce makes that clear. My goal with this petition is to put forth a strong argument that there are a significant number of viewers around the world that would be happy having a Marco Polo series finale in the form of a made for Netflix feature length film. This represents a compromise that is budget conscious for the primary players, Netflix and The Weinstein Company (as they would not have to produce all of those costly multiple episodes, but only one feature film), but also allows for the heavily invested audience of paying Netflix subscribers that are clamoring for a proper resolution to the Marco Polo series, an opportunity to see John Fusco close out his full vision for the show.
I hope to get 50,000 signatures for this petition, at which point I will submit them to Netflix and The Weinstein Company, along with a brief letter explaining how we got to that many signatures and why the fans are so passionate to see Marco Polo return to Netflix one last time.
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