Heroes: Origins is an aborted anthology spinoff of Heroes. Each episode was meant to follow a different superpowered individual that hasn't been seen on the main show before as they first discover their power. Originally, it was conceived as a way to eliminate the midseason hiatus which caused the series to falter in ratings during its first season. Later, creator Tim Kring reconsidered this idea and instead intended to broadcast all six episodes after the season finale in April.
Because Origins was meant to be stylistically different from the main series, producers attempted to attach big name filmmakers to episodes. Directors Kevin Smith (Clerks) and Eli Roth (Hostel) were confirmed as on board, as were screenwriters Michael Dougherty (Superman Returns) and John August (Charlie's Angels).
On October 31, 2007, NBC announced that the series has been shelved indefinitely. The network didn't give a reason at the time for why the spin-off was shelved, but indicated that the WGA strike played a role. After NBC announced its 2008-2009 primetime schedule, Ben Silverman, the co-chairman of NBC Entertainment and Universal Media Studios confirmed the series' shelving. He stated, "We were taxing our creative team to do too much around that... We wanted thirty-five Heroes episodes and twelve Heroes: Origins, each of which was supposed to be a mini-movie and backdoor pilot. We reached far and challenged our people, and we decided it was better to focus on keeping the Heroes mothership as strong as possible."
Although Kring has indicated that the concept of the show isn't dead, the diminishing ratings compared to the first season may put any Heroes side-projects on hold until the audience returns. In a way, the Origins concept has been revived for the webisode miniseries, which initially told the same kind of "Origins" stories.
- At a Glance: Additional information about the series