Why Did Barney Harris Leave The Wheel Of Time?


What happened to Barney Harris on The Wheel Of Time? Why was he replaced after the first season aired on Amazon Prime Video? The Wheel Of Time Season 1 landed on Amazon Prime Video, and there’s been a rather mixed reaction to the series. However, most people seem in agreement that Barney Harris is very good as Mat Cauthon. The thing is, he won’t be playing the character in Season 2. So, understandably, fans of the show are asking themselves why Harris is leaving the show after just one season. Why did he leave? Was he sacked, or did he leave of his own accord? Did he end up getting a better offer to star in a big movie or an even bigger TV show?

These are all questions that I am going to try to answer in this article. However, I will tell you now that Amazon and Harris himself are keeping silent about the whole thing, which to me, at least, indicates that the reasons for Harris leaving the show might have been very personal.

Was Barney Harris sacked from The Wheel Of Time after Season 1?


Credit: Amazon Prime Video

Read more: The Wheel Of Time Is One Of Amazon’s Top Launches Ever

Honestly, we still don’t know whether Barney Harris left the show of his own accord or whether he was sacked. There’s been no news on that as of writing this article. However, there are a lot of people speculating on what really happened. It does seem as though most people believe that Harris left the show due to personal reasons. There weren’t any rumours of problems with the actor on set. This makes me believe that the cast and crew didn’t have an issue with the actor.

He is relatively young – as are most of the actors in the show – and it might have been just a bit too much for the actor. The other possibility is that the show’s producers might have seen his performance in the show’s first season and decided to go in a different direction with the character for the second season.

The thing is, I think he’s excellent in the role, so it would surprise me slightly if the call to have Mat recast came from the show’s producers. Finally, some people who have posited the theory that Barney left the show because he got a better offer to star in something else. The issue with this theory is that Barney Harris left the show to star in something else is that he’s not currently attached to any future projects.

Who is playing Mat in Season 2?


Credit: Amazon Prime Video

Read more: The Wheel Of Time Season 2: Release Date, Cast & Story

As for who’ll be playing Mat in The Wheel Of Time Season 2, it was announced pretty soon after Harris revealed he was leaving the show that Dónal Finn from The Witcher will be taking over the role for the foreseeable future. Recasting in shows such as these isn’t strictly unusual. It is relatively rare, especially when it comes to a show’s lead characters. I can’t remember the last time a show recast one of its leads after the first season.

It undoubtedly has happened in the past, but if a character is being recast, it’s usually one of the secondary characters. Mat is one of the five possible Dragons from the Two Rivers and is a key player in the books. It’ll be interesting to see how Dónal Finn does, especially since Barney Harris was easily the most popular actor from the first season. He’s a much more talented actor than the other young actors on the show. That is a personal opinion, but one which I will stand by. It’ll be a shame not to have him around in the second season.

What’s next for Barney Harris after The Wheel Of Time Season 1?


Credit: Amazon Prime Video

Read more: Who Is The Real Dragon Reborn In The Wheel Of Time?

As I mentioned above, Barney Harris isn’t currently attached to any other projects after The Wheel Of Time Season 1. I do hope he ends up starring in something and has an excellent career. We’ll have to wait and see what happens, but given his terrific performance in the first season of this show, I’m sure the offers will be coming in. I just hope he didn’t leave the show due to a poor attitude on set, and I also hope that it was personal reasons, the actor is in a good place mentally and hasn’t suffered anything traumatic.

What do you make of this feature? Are you looking forward to seeing The Wheel Of Time Season 2, and how do you think Finn will do as Mat? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.


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There are 19 comments

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  1. Dan

    I have a theory that the show runners wanted to kill off Mat, and Barney quit because he knew how great of a character Mat becomes in the books and didn’t want any part of it.

    • Daryl

      If you think he did a good job portraying Mat Cauthon, then you never read the books. He did a terrible job. Awful actor. He made Mat look moody and sullen all the time. Even before he got the dagger. Overall the show in general is terrible at portraying all the lead characters, nothing like the books. But he was the worst.

  2. chuck

    anytime the mat character was having to show any nuance or “dark” behaviour it felt absurdly forced and kinda cringey, now it might be on the writing not the actor, but by the end of the season I can’t say i was bothered if/what happened to the character

  3. Scott McGee-Plys

    He appears to have left before season 1 wrapped, so perhaps never returned to set after pandemic shutdowns because he is unwilling to get the vacc?

  4. DJC

    This series was just awful, not just in its writing, not just in mangling the lore, but also in its rendering of the central themes of the story. And being such a man-hating production as it was, I have to seriously consider whether Barney Harris finally said, “nope, I’m done.” Naturally any non-disparagement agreement would require him to either lie or clamp his teeth shut.

  5. Anonymous

    Laughably poor, unbelievably woke, terrible acting combined with woke directing means a good story has been reduced to a demonstration of how terrible men are, how important women are, how woke TV directors and script writer have become all desperately trying not to offend anyone.

  6. Anonymous

    As stated above the series ruined the story in so many different ways, 5 possible dragons my hind end, let’s throw the women into the mix to show how progressive we are rather than follow the story.

  7. Robert Johnson

    I just remembered why I don’t like to read comments. Barney is a very good actor and did a better job than just about anyone else. The series is decent, so what if the actors don’t look like people thought when reading the books… the world is changing… deal with it. I would like to see some better rendered effects but thought the show wasn’t bad overall. Unlike all the other commenters here, who SUCK. I’d hate to see how you all whine when real adversity comes along in your lives. Yikes.

  8. ukvillafan

    Quite possibly the worst book adaptation i have ever seen, and I am in my 60s! The timeline is mangled, the characters are inadequately formed, the really rather dreadful attempt to modernise a story that is, in essence, set in an older time frame is vomit-inducing and the production values are, well, cheap despite the amount of money apparently spent. Given this is, fundamentally, a coming of age story, turning all of the characters into sexual 20 somethings is just plain wrong. Dreadful all around and Harris is well out of it.

  9. JMSilvers

    It really is pathetic reading these comments, glad to see not every commenter on this site is a repressed child who gets their butt hurt by the fact brown people exist.

  10. Hawkmoon

    It’s funny to me. I’ve read the whole series more then once. And nowhere in the books are the races of the main characters described in detail. In fact the Aiel are the only ones where there is constant description of their red and blonde hair and their pale skin. And they are instantly recognizable as different from others.

    I long suspected that the whole main cast was supposed to be dark-skinned all along, with the „barbarian“ Aiel being white.

    Though I agree that many things have been unnecessarily changed, like 5 Ta‘veren. But I grant the showrunners some creative freedom. The Seanchan show up a little early for my taste. And mat was missing his mischievous streak and the bond between him and Rand isn’t fleshed out enough.

  11. Lily

    Well, he was pretty bad and one-note in season 1 so I’d say they most likely gave him the boot. All the rumors sponsored by Anti-Vaccine-Inc. are ludicrous. If he was an anti-vaxxer you can bet your bottom dollar he would have been all over social media crying about being a victim.
    The fact he hasn’t even made a single statement on any social media or through his reps is evidence enough he was fired because he stinks. I wish him luck though. There are way worse actors out there who are making a career so why not him?

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