Jump to content
Koby

His Dark Materials (incl. The Golden Compass) (Mini-Series)

Recommended Posts

GGpmXB7.jpg

Your mileage may vary when it comes to the 2007 film The Golden Compass. But love it or hate it, fans of His Dark Materials, the Philip Pullman book series it was based on, had to have been disappointed that the underperforming franchise never made it past its first installment. We didn’t even get to Part 2, with Will Parry and his subtle knife! For those thirsty to see the adventures of Lyra, Will, and those armored bears on-screen in a more complete form, rejoice. BBC One has commissioned an eight-part mini-series based on the books, and this time, we hope, Will and Lyra go all the way.

Variety reports that former BBC executives Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner will make the His Dark Materials series the flagship effort of their newly formed production company, Bad Wolf. The company has solid ties to the BBC; Tranter and Gardner produced, among other things, the new Doctor Who, which is where the Bad Wolf name comes from. But the new company is also connected to HBO. Tranter told Variety earlier this summer, “The best way of describing it is we are HBO’s people in the U.K. Our task is to ensure that HBO are across anything and everything that they might want to be in terms of writers, directors, actors, and producers, not limited to Bad Wolf, bringing to HBO’s attention the many exciting things that are happening in the U.K.”

This is great news for those hoping that His Dark Materials will be the highest quality series it can possibly be. The BBC has already shown it’s capable of a top-notch fantasy adaptation with 2015’s stellar Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, but an association with HBO (and a mention of Game of Thrones as an inspiration for His Dark Materials) means that Tranter and Gardner have an even bigger scope in mind for this eight-episode production.

And scope was one of the reasons why The Golden Compass was a disappointment to many back in 2007. The earlier version had some top-notch casting, including the voice of Sir Ian McKellen as the armored bear Iorek Byrnison, Sam Elliott as Texan aeronaut Lee Scoresby, and Eva Green as the witch Serafina Pekkala. The BBC version will be hard-pressed to find anyone more cowboyish than Elliott or witchier than Green. But Pullman’s books are far denser than, say, the Harry Potter series and didn’t fit easily into the limited screen time of a feature film. It’s possible that given more room, the true magic of Pullman’s story will translate to the screen.

“In recent years,” Pullman said, addressing just this concern, “we’ve seen how long stories on television, whether adaptations (Game of Thrones) or original (The Sopranos, The Wire), can reach depths of characterization and heights of suspense by taking the time for events to make their proper impact and for consequences to unravel. And the sheer talent now working in the world of long-form television is formidable. For all those reasons I’m delighted at the prospect of a television version of His Dark Materials. I’m especially pleased at the involvement of Jane Tranter, whose experience, imagination, and drive are second to none. As for the BBC, it has no stronger supporter than me. I couldn’t be more pleased with this news.”

There’s no confirmation yet whether the first eight episodes will just cover the first book (called Northern Lights in the U.K. and The Golden Compass in the U.S.), with subsequent seasons tackling The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass. But that approach seems likely, given how much growing up Lyra has to do over the course of the story. His Dark Materials has been published in more than 40 languages, and has sold close to 17.5 million copies worldwide. It’s been a radio play and a stage play. Now, finally, Lyra may be getting the on-screen treatment she deserves.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thats good news as i read the books years ago when a friend lent them to me and i liked the world created in the books. The movie was disappointing as it was toned down and missed a lot from the novels. Hopefully each book will be given 8 episodes each.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, good news indeed!  I also found the movie a bit disappointing, but with all the material from the novels there is some real potential for a good mini-series.  Hopefully they can do it justice.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/18/2019 at 10:47 AM, CardGames said:

I actually liked The Golden Compass movie so I may have to give this a watch.

 

Premiere Date?

All we know right now is sometime in 2019.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First episode of this was fairly decent.

 

It's going to take some time for me to get used to not-Nicole Kidman as one of the villains. lol.

 

James McAvoy is killing it though.

 

Also... the preview of the season that aired at the end of the first episode made it appear as though S1 is just going to be based off of Book 1 Golden Compass? I don't know honestly. That's fine... I guess. Not that there's anything I can do about it. 🤷‍♂️

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Haven't had a chance to watch the episode yet myself, but people seem to generally have liked it from what I've read around. If they only do book 1 in season 1, I wonder how they'll compress the other books all into season 2 by itself. I kind of figured they'd do part of book 2 this season as well, but idk.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, Koby said:

Haven't had a chance to watch the episode yet myself, but people seem to generally have liked it from what I've read around. If they only do book 1 in season 1, I wonder how they'll compress the other books all into season 2 by itself. I kind of figured they'd do part of book 2 this season as well, but idk.

Like I said... I honestly don't know and am not 100% sure. It's just what it seemed like from their 'this season' preview that aired at the end of episode 1.

 

I never read the books. I only watched the original Golden Compass movie.

Edited by CardGames

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×