‘Narnia’ Franchise Saved By Fox

Published 6 years ago by

20th century fox logo Narnia Franchise Saved By FoxA month after it was revealed that Walt Disney had pulled out of financing the next Narnia film we have news that 20th Century Fox has swooped in and taken hold of (part of) the financial reigns. Budget and script issues are still being worked out between Walden and Fox but they hope for an end of summer start date for shooting and are aiming for a summer 2010 release.

This is a kind of stroke of ironic luck on Fox’s part as head of Fox 2000 (the part of Fox that will be spearheading production and development matters) had been pursuing the Narnia franchise but was beaten to it by Walden. Over the past few years they have been looking for “a family-friendly, lit-based franchise for years,” with Eragon being a disappointing financial flop for them.

The sequel, subtitled Voyage of the Dawn Treader, is reported to have a $141 million budget, which is certainly a lot less than the $215 million that Prince Caspian had. Maybe they’re playing it as safe as they can budget-wise (although no one’s saying $141 million is in any way a small amount of money) as the high budget of the last one was the reason it was such a financial disappointment.

What may have contributed also to the box-office disappointment of Caspian was that it’s considered to be the least commercially appealing of any of the original books and I’m sure the more family-friendly style of Dawn Treader will contribute to it doing better this time around.

The not too distant summer start date for shooting depends on the writer. The most recent draft that both Walden and Fox approved was written by Richard LaGravanese (The Fisher King, P.S. I Love You) but his availability is in question as he’s currently adapting the book Water for Elephants for none other than Fox 2000.

I’m pretty sure Narnia is a bigger priority for the company, however…

After the wheels are in motion the film will likely be shot in Australia, moving away from the originally intended location of Mexico in the Fox owned facility Rosarito where such films as Titanic and Master and Commander were shot.

Okay, okay, I’ll go ahead and say it – Fox probably has (or will have) enough money lying around after the WB/Watchmen settlement is done with and probably saw dollar signs when Walt Disney pulled out of producing this series. Although it’s certainly a risk on Fox’s part because of the financial failure of the last film they probably think the payoff if it does make as much money as they’re hoping, is worth the risk.

So are you glad that the Narnia franchise has been saved and will continue on? And are you glad that Fox was the one to save it?

Source: IESB

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  1. Good, I want to see what happens next in the Narnia world… And before all of you guys are like “Oh no, Fox is going to ruin it!” I think their only role is funding the film right? Someone else is actually producing it??

  2. My third grade teacher, Mrs. Duer, read us these books and I remember the visualizations as if they were being painted by my mind even today. While the films have captured much of what I remember, there IS something to leaving something to the mind.

    They are effects-fests to be sure, and provide audiences with something that I think is something other than “LOTR for kids”. Sadly, I think the train has departed and I shall wait for the box set to buy any others.

  3. I liked it when Disney had Narnia and was sad that they let it go.I was hoping Sony would get it but I knew it would not happen.But I was nervous when they thpugh fox was gonna get it.I was afraid they would ruinit like they did Eragon.Well,it will be interesting to see how a different company will handle it.

  4. FOX would fall into a $H!& filled toilet and come out smelling like a rose…

  5. I am Going to see it but I still intend to skip most films with the Fox logo attached.

  6. I’m thrilled that it has been picked up. Though, I am a bit worried about the treatment. Narnia is strongly religious and I was impressed that Disney did not clean it all up. I think FOX will be more likely to do that.

    I do have to disagree with one thing though. I think The Silver Chair is the least appealing and hardest to translate to a movie, as it also happens to be my least favorite book. The Dawn Treader should be fantastic and I think it is probably the easiest to translate and express and *hold interest* in film. Truthfully though, I really want to see A Horse and His Boy on film as that remains my favorite of the 7.

  7. Honestly, I like good movies; Fox doesn’t make good movies. There is a good chance that if unhindered this could be the third film in a Fox revival, after Wolverine(I refuse to add the subtitle) and Avatar.

    I want them to return to form, after all these are the people that brought us the original Star Wars, Alien and Predator franchises. The problems I’ve had with them in recent years is they’re cutting of corners, such as the creation of cheap sets and costumes that hinder the suspension of disbelief. Also their stiffling of creativity as evidenced in their hack job editting of films to reach a supposed perfect length of 1 hour 40 mins.

    Both of these Ideas have merits; the saving of money and keeping the art under control. The extent to which Fox currently do it though destroys both the believability and coherrence of their films. I like the silver Chair hope they make that one next. SATR (Sorry about the rant).

  8. too bad i love what walt disney and walden media did for the first two films. i think fox is a good company for the franchise. im going to truely miss walt disney though.

    its so true that sometimes a HIGH budget can effect a film. prince caspian was a blockbuster hit. i hope all the future sequel are great; ”narnia rules”.