IN WHICH OUR HERO LAYS OUT HIS PLANS TO MAKE A FORTUNE
Star Wars. Harry Potter. To a lesser extent, the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Tales on the big screen in which a young hero comes of age and defeats overwhelming evil with the help of a loyal band of companions. Simple premise and a time-honored tradition in story-telling that, oh, by the way, has resulted in ticket sales between those franchises of around $12.3 billion.
And as each of these film series became more and more of a cultural phenomena, it made me scratch my head in confusion that the Chronicles of Prydain was never given the same treatment. Five children's books with critical acclaim (including Newbery Honor and Newbery Medal winners), a story structure similar to proven winners...what gives?
Sure, Disney gave it a half-hearted go back in the mid-80's, doing an awful mash-up of the first two entries in the series, deleting out some key characters and making up a few new ones, changing the overall storyline and generally making it unrecognizable from the books. What they got for their laughable effort was a flick that barely recouped 40% of the cost to make it.
There's a way to make this work and stand out, but it would take an imaginative plan. And I'm just the fella to make those recommendations. More posts to come on this subject...