Trailer and Premier Updates
HC Puts Big Money Behind ‘Chronicles of Narnia’
March 15, 2005
By Caroline Horn
Retailers and buyers saw the first screening of the opening scenes of the forthcoming film of The Chronicles of Narnia—the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe at the fair yesterday.
HarperCollins UK is the primary publisher of C S Lewis, and will publish the new film tie-in titles in all English-speaking territories. HC Children’s Books managing director Sally Gritten said that the publishing program would cover all price points and ages.
The Narnia backlist will be refreshed, and the classic series reissued in June, as part of a summer reading campaign for children. A teachers’ pack will be sent out to 22,000 schools and HC will work closely with libraries. A new series with adult covers will also be published in June.
The U.K. marketing team will start to work with retailers next month on bespoke promotional campaigns, said Caroline Paul, head of marketing and publicity for HC Children’s Books. “We will also be sending monthly newsletters with the latest news, clips and images from the filming to our customers.”
Foreign rights sales for the tie-in titles will be finalized at London and Bologna by the HC UK rights team. The seven-book series is already published in more than 30 territories, but the film is attracting additional deals in smaller countries including Hungary and Vietnam, said children’s rights director Susan Winton.
HC will work with coedition partners for the tie-in titles. Text for the new books has already been agreed by the C S Lewis estate and by Disney. “The challenge for publishers is to get the titles translated at an incredible speed and approved images from the filming included, ready for the autumn,” said Winton.
The film, a co-production between Disney and Walden Media, is backed by the biggest production and marketing budget in Disney’s history, estimated at $150 million.
The first trailer will be released in theatres in April with a global marketing and publicity campaign building towards the December 9 launch. The world premiere will take place at the Royal Albert Hall [link] on December 7, with parts of the adjacent Hyde Park transformed into a “winter wonderland” scene for the premiere.
This story was originally published at The Book Standard