Netflix has snapped up the rights to develop series and films based on The Chronicles of Narnia.
The battle lines for a post-Game of Thrones are being drawn, as broadcasters and streaming platforms prepare to fight for eyeballs when HBO’s fantasy juggernaut ends next year. HBO is banking on sci-fi epic Westworld, while Amazon is betting big on a series based on The Lord of the Rings and Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time. Now, Netflix is lining up its armies in C.S. Lewis’ camp.
Netflix will develop new series and film projects based on the author’s beloved series in a multi-year deal with The C.S. Lewis Company. The agreement will see Netflix develop classic stories from across the Narnia universe into series and films for its members worldwide. All series and films produced through the deal will be Netflix productions, with Mark Gordon of Entertainment One (eOne) alongside Douglas Gresham and Vincent Sieber serving as executive producers for series and as producers for features.
In total, the Narnia books have sold more than 100 million copies and been translated in more than 47 languages worldwide. They have been seen on screen before, from a recent run of feature films (pictured above) to a BBC series in the late 1980s that became an iconic part of a generation’s childhood – a sign for what Netflix’s adaptations will hope to achieve. The deal marks the first time that rights to the entire seven books of the Narnia universe have been held by the same company.
“C.S. Lewis’ beloved Chronicles of Narnia stories have resonated with generations of readers around the world,” says Ted Sarandos, Chief Content Officer, Netflix. “Families have fallen in love with characters like Aslan and the entire world of Narnia, and we’re thrilled to be their home for years to come.”
“It is wonderful to know that folks from all over are looking forward to seeing more of Narnia, and that the advances in production and distribution technology have made it possible for us to make Narnian adventures come to life all over the world,” adds Douglas Gresham, stepson of C.S. Lewis. “Netflix seems to be the very best medium with which to achieve this aim, and I am looking forward to working with them towards this goal.”
“Narnia is one of those rare properties that spans multiple generations and geographies,” comments Mark Gordon, eOne’s President and Chief Content Officer, Film & Television. “eOne and I are excited to be collaborating with The C.S. Lewis Company and Netflix who have the capacity to translate the Narnia universe into both stellar feature-length and episodic programming. We cannot wait to get started on the multiple productions we hope to undertake.”