If you're eagerly awaiting the next season of The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers, recently renewed for a second installation on Disney+, be aware there's apparently one big casting cut. Yahoo Entertainment reports that Emilio Estevez won't be reprising his role as coach Gordon Bombay, which he also played in all three Mighty Ducks movies in the '90s, because he won't comply with Disney TV Studios' vaccine mandate. Us Weekly also confirms the news, first reported by Deadline on Friday. Per that outlet, "after weeks of back and forth with his team," Estevez's option for the show wasn't picked up after he wouldn't agree to Disney TV Studios' requirement that everyone in Zone A (meaning cast, as well as crew members who come into direct contact with them) be vaccinated against COVID.
Sources say assurances were repeatedly sought via Estevez's reps that he would get vaccinated before production started, but those assurances never came. His character will reportedly be written out of the show. Estevez himself hasn't yet commented, nor has Disney, but sources said to be close to the 59-year-old actor tell Deadline that "creative differences may have played a role" in his departure. (Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers continues to defend his decision not to get vaccinated.)