10 January 2009

What future for "Voyage of the Dawn Treader"?

The Guardian reports that Disney will no longer partner with Walden Media to produce the film version of The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. I find this strangely annoying. I say "strangely" annoying because I have not been a fan of recent film adaptations of beloved books. I should be relieved--"Treader" is safe and can stay just as I remember reading it, rather than how someone chooses to translate it.

But I took umbrage with a comment in the article which stated that, while the decision was no doubt financial (Prince Caspian made considerably less money than The Lion the Witch and The Wardrobe) part of the problem is that today's readers are not as familiar with the rest of the series. This is in marked contrast to the Harry Potter books, for example, which are equally popular from volume to volume. The thought that the Narnia books are somehow less than the Potter books just irks beyond measure! "Treader" as it stands in the Narnia sequence (the original one, by the way, not the reconfigured, chronological sequence thrust upon us in the 90's) is the bridge between the story of the Penvensie children and the rest of the chronicles. It also boasts one of the best opening lines ever in Children's Literature: "There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it."

So now I want "Treader" to be a film, finances and nostalgia be damned!

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