Paul King, director of Paddington, is set to work on a movie adaptation of the magic-filled love story, Time's Fool. Originally penned by Glyn Maxwell and released in 2001, Time's Fool: A Tale in Verse is a novel written in a terza rima poetic style that tells the story of Edmund Lea, a man stuck on a perpetually stalling train for all eternity. Once every seven years, the train stops in Lea's home town and he must attempt to break the curse that imprisons him. Time's Fool was highly regarded upon publication and drew comparisons to other supernatural epics like Rime of the Ancient Mariner and the legend of the Flying Dutchman.
British director King made his big-screen breakthrough with 2014's Paddington and was also behind the camera for the rapturously received sequel in 2017. Prior to that, King was perhaps best known for his work in British TV comedy, directing shows such as cult favorites The Mighty Boosh and Garth Marenghi's Darkplace, as well as the Matt Lucas and David Walliams-fronted Come Fly With Me. Although a third Paddington installment is reportedly in development, King is unsure as to whether he will direct it himself.
The director has, however, signed up for a brand new project, as Deadline is reporting that King will direct a Time's Fool movie adaptation. The film will reunite King with two more Paddington alumni in the form of producer David Heyman and writer Jon Croker, with the latter penning the screenplay for Time's Fool alongside King. All three men will serve as producers and the movie that will be released under Fox Searchlight. Speaking about his latest project, King stated:
“I’ve always been attracted to films which use magical ideas to explore real human emotions. And so when, one rainy afternoon, Jon poured me a cup of tea and told me the story of Time’s Fool, I was immediately hooked. It’s a captivating tale of wonder and heartbreak which sets the pulse racing and the imagination on fire. David, Jon and I will do our best not to mess it up.”
Given the critical and commercial success of the two Paddington movies, the prospect of King, Heyman and Croker working together once again is certainly a positive sign. The sequel in particular managed to find a pleasing balance between humor, family fun and a genuinely heartfelt story and with an ambitious project such as Time's Fool, a similar approach will likely be required. Tackling a magic-infused love story is certainly new ground for the director however, and it'll be interesting to see how he interprets the source material.
This is especially true since Time's Fool isn't simply being adapted from a book but from a book-length poem and this may fundamentally alter how the creative team approach this project. Will the script include some of the terza rima rhyming structure to add more authenticity, for example, or will the movie tell the story of Time's Fool in a way more traditional for the world of cinema? In either case, this is certainly one production worth keeping an eye on as things develop.
Time's Fool is currently without a release date. More news as it arrives.