Netflix has released several new images from its prequel series, The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, ahead of its August premiere date. Directed by Jim Henson and Frank Oz, The Dark Crystal hit theaters in 1982 and followed a pair of heroic elf-like creatures, or Gelflings, as they battle the evil Skeksis on the planet Thra. The fantasy adventure was far darker than anything else Henson had made up to that point, and its tone left critics and audiences with mixed feelings. However, in the decades since then, the film has attracted a cult following and is now considered an '80s classic in the vein of similar box office misfires like Henson's own Labyrinth.
In recent years, The Jim Henson Company (led by his daughter, Lisa) has made an active effort to revive its 1980s fantasy properties, and is currently developing a Labyrinth followup by director Fede Alvarez (Don't Breathe). Similarly, they teamed up with Archaia Comics and BOOM! Studios on The Power of the Dark Crystal comic book miniseries (an adaptation of the never-produced script for a Dark Crystal sequel film) in 2017, and are working with Netflix on a ten-episode prequel series title Age of Resistance. The latter now has an official 2019 premiere date, along with a handful of fresh photos.
Per Netflix's press release, The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance will begin streaming this summer on Friday, August 30. The streaming service has also unveiled a half-dozen new images from the series, following the release of the first look photos and voice cast announcement in late 2018. You can check them out, below.
Written by relative newcomers Jeffrey Addiss and Will Matthews, as well as Javier Grillo-Marxuach (Lost, Helix), Age of Resistance takes place many years before The Dark Crystal, as a trio of Gelflings learn the truth about the Dark Crystal and Skeksis, and set out to save their world. Said heroes (Rian, Brea, and Deet) are pictured in the latest photos and voiced by, respectively, Taron Egerton (Rocketman), Anya Taylor-Joy (Glass), and Nathalie Emmanuel (Game of Thrones). Also shown here are the Skeksis at one of their gruesome banquets, along with a pair known as simply The Scientist and Scroll-Keeper. Finally, the photo of Brea shows her researching Aughra, a character from The Dark Crystal who's voiced by Donna Kimball (The Happytime Murders) in Age of Resistance.
As these photos illustrate, Age of Resistance will be (very) visually faithful to The Dark Crystal movie, as far as its production design and color palette are concerned. Similarly, series director Louis Leterrier (Clash of the Titans, Now You See Me) has confirmed the project used puppets, not CGI, to bring its fantasy characters to life, just like Henson and Oz's original film did all those years ago. Obviously, there will be some post-production tinkering to remove the puppeteers from the sets, but otherwise the series seems like a successful throwback to a bygone era of Henson productions, style-wise. Combine that with a star-studded cast that includes Mark Hamill, Simon Pegg, and Keegan-Michael Key as the voices of the Skeksis (among many, many others), and this prequel continues to look and sound quite promising.
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance begins streaming Friday, August 30 through Netflix.