Thursday, February 01, 2007

Three Books Optioned By Hensons - One Of Them An Edward Gorey!

Beyond the next Dark Crystal and Ahmet Zappa's Fraggle Rock, there's plenty more of note on the Henson slate.

[EDIT: There's a shocking update to be found in a newer post]

Most exciting to me is their film of Edward Gorey's The Doubtful Guest. No doubt (ahem) this will be a markedly more complex affair than the slim book, at least in plot terms, but the lead character seems like a great match for the creature workshop. That's him up there, at the top of the page. Brad Peyton is to direct, Matthew Huffman is writing the script. Peyton, you may or may not know, made a short film called Evelyn: The Cutest Evil Dead Girl that has proven very popular with emo-kids and those craving a low-cal pseudo-Tim Burton fix between courses of the real thing. I'm hoping he can step up to the challenge with Guest, and I'm prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt.

Brian Henson himself will direct their film of The Boggart, from Susan Cooper's ghost story for kids. This is to be a live action film, though the titular spirit is likely to benefit from that beloved Henson trickery.

And, finally, there's also a film derived from the Monster Blood Tattoo series on the cards. No writer or director has been engaged so far, but this stands to be the beginning of a successful franchise for The Jim Henson Company and it's likely that some experienced and well-tested professionals will get the gig. The setting is not entirely unlike those of Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials series, though the storylines of D. M Cornish's books are reportedly more straightforward, action packed and immediately accessible to all.

The lead role is that of an orphaned boy apprenticed to an adventurous bounty hunter of magical monsters - brilliant wish fulfillment stuff, not quite as nancy as Harry Potter's rabbit-in-a-hat goody-two-shoes magicking. Could be a smash.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I work for the associated press, we just got this news:

Production on The Jim Henson Company's sequel to the 1982 cult classic "The Dark Crystal" -- titled "The Power of the Dark Crystal" -- has been put on hold after more than two years of pre-production, casting and preparation. It's believed that Henson Company executives and Genndy Tartakovsky ultimately decided to cancel production on the film and not move foreword. Production is said to be "on hiatus", but it looks unlikely that fans of the original will ever see this follow-up fantasy film completed -- Henson has not commented on the production status and insiders say production is not planned to move forward.