'Narnia' Revived: CS Lewis' Stepson Backs 'Captain America' Director to Helm 'The Silver Chair' Film
A revival of the "Narnia" series is on the way with "Captain America" director Joe Johnston set to direct "The Silver Chair," according to film producer Douglas Gresham, stepson of C.S. Lewis.
Variety reported last week that TriStar Pictures will partner with the Mark Gordon Company, the C.S. Lewis Company, and Entertainment One to revive the film series, which is based on the beloved fantasy books The Chronicles of Narnia by Christian author C.S. Lewis.
When announcing that Johnston, who also directed 1995's "Jumanji" with Robin Williams, will direct the next installment, producer Mark Gordon said:
"Joe is a wonderful storyteller who is equally at home in the biggest franchises and the most intimate character pieces."
"Because C.S. Lewis' story is iconic and epic, but also tender, personal, and emotional, he's the perfect choice to bring 'The Silver Chair' to the screen," he added.
Gresham later told fans on NarniaWeb that the movie might still be some ways away, but still shared his excitement:
"We have an experienced and talented director for 'The Silver Chair' and that means that with Joe Johnston at the helm, serious development work can now get started. This is when it starts to be hard work and fun combined.
"Don't hold your breath, but things are happening at last."
"The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe," "Prince Caspian," and "The Voyage of the Dawn Treader" movies performed to various critical reception, but the series proved to be financially successful, hauling in close to $1.6 billion at the box office.
The book series has been translated into more than 50 languages and has sold over 100 million copies worldwide.
Forbes.com noted in its analysis of the news of the revival that the "Narnia" film series may never reach the success of "Lord of the Rings" or "Harry Potter," but concluded that if producers "budget and account for the likelihood that anything close to the $415M-$419M totals of the sequels is a huge win, then they have a shot."
It was first announced back in October 2013 that "The Silver Chair" will be the next film in the Narnia series, but it has taken over three-and-a-half years for news that the project is finally being put together.
"Like many readers, both young and old, I am a huge fan of C.S. Lewis's beautiful and allegorical world of Narnia," Gordon said at the time. "These fantasy stories inspire real-world passion among millions of devoted fans around the world. As we prepare to bring the next book to life, we are humbled and excited to contribute to the outstanding legacy of Narnia."
Gresham expressed his hopes in 2011 that he will be able to contribute to the next movie.
"It is my hope that the Lord will spare me and keep me fit and healthy enough so that in three or four years time we can start production on the next one," Gresham said then.