VDT Blog – “Dedicated to the Ones He Loves”

The Dawn Treader production has posted their first blog entry on Facebook with more details about the Dawn Treader. The following pictures were also posted.

Dear Friends:

We are delighted to offer the first of a planned series of reports direct from the set of The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. These will not be the kinds of canned pieces you’d find on “traditional” outlets. Instead, you’ll be getting unfiltered reports from and about the filmmakers, as they work tirelessly to bring all the magic of C.S. Lewis’ beloved story and characters to the big screen:

“Dedicated to the Ones He Loves”
by Ernie Malik

“All Narnians, with grateful hearts may we give thanks to the crew of the mighty Dawn Treader for their strong minds and artisan hands”

So reads the dedication etched onto the base of the towering mast of production designer Barry Robison’s mighty and majestic set build of the film’s title character in “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” which sat out on the peninsula at Cleveland Point about 20 miles east of Brisbane, Australia, and hosted cast/crew for 17 days of filming during the month of September.

What does it all mean?

It’s very possible that such merchant sailing ships of yore carried the names of its crew in honor of those whose hands helped build such a ship. Or, that of an unexpected death at sea.

In the film’s story, it was Barry’s idea to inscribe the ship’s soaring mast as Caspian’s dedication to his loyal Narnian crew who built the vessel for their King. While audiences will never see a close-up of the names on the mast, they represent, in the story, those Telmarine sailors on the journey with Caspian and the Pevensies.

However, below Barry’s poetic inscription on The Dawn Treader (which, by the way, was modeled somewhat after James Cook’s Endeavour, which sailed the South Seas in 1768, a replica of which currently sits in Sydney’s harbor) are the actual names of each individual on the film crew who had a hand in bringing this kingly frigate to life.

Regardless of their home, be it the U.S., Mexico, England, New Zealand, or Australia.

The list honors those carpenters, illustrators, plasterers, painters, laborers and art department personnel who all contributed to this monument to motion picture set designs. Robison estimates there are at least 200 people listed.

When he is questioned about the vessel (its inspiration, or dimensions, or whatever), the longtime movie artisan is quick to include the names of those who assisted in bringing his grand vision to life. While his name alone will grace the motion picture screen as the sole production designer for the film, he fondly recognizes that there are dozens of creative minds (and hundreds of talented hands) that crafted the regal set design.

Like supervising art director Ian Gracie, who served in the same capacity on “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.” Kiwi art director Mark Robins, who spent every day out at Cleveland Point overseeing its construction (after watching it first come to life on a sound stage at the studio). Mexican art director Marco Nero, whose early design work when filming was scheduled for Rosarito Beach (the site of the “Titanic” shoot in 1996) proved invaluable. Construction manager Sean Ahern. Head scenic (painter) Matt Connors, without whose contributions the ship would be just a colorless model. Like the names on the mast, Barry’s list goes on and on.

The day the boat was finally erected in its entirety out on the peninsula that juts out into the South Pacific, Barry stood beside his creation, almost in tears at the sight of the finality of what began as a three-foot model some 28 months ago.

Now, his design, and that of his colleagues, would get to shine before the movie cameras.

So, these few words are dedicated to this gracious gentleman, artist and creative talent whose own contributions to not only the Dawn Treader, but the entire movie itself, stand as a testament to movie magic in a land and world whose magical landscape has endured with readers the world over for well over a half century. And, will continue well into the millennium.

78 Responses

  1. Lutra's Pearl says:

    Wow! I think that that is so cool!!! Keep the story of Aslan alive!!!!

    • Lutra's Pearl says:

      Those pictures are beautiful!!

      • JadistarkilleR says:

        indeed! and to think that the fan photos from Cleveland point were pretty good. but seeing these offical photos, my God, they just take your breath away on how beautiful they are.

        i'm going out on a limb here, but what the heck. I PREDICT: Best Cinematography for Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader πŸ˜€

  2. Starlily says:

    If I'm the first comment, then I just have to say WOW, because I'm never the first. And if I'm not first, then I'm sorry you wasted your time reading what I said above.
    Anyway, this blog is cool. No spoilers really, but pretty neat. I wish I could stand on the Dawn Treader and read those names on the plaque! πŸ™‚

  3. 7chronicles says:

    Love the Pictures, nice to finally know what is written on the mast. Hope they continue this blog like they did with Prince Caspian's movie blog!

  4. Starlily says:

    Wow I just looked at the pictures! Ben and Skandar and Georgie look great, and so does the ship! That helm is gorgeous!! With Aslan on it and everything! I can't wait to see it on film! And the doors on the cabin behind Ben and Skandar are beautiful!

    • Lutra's Pearl says:

      My words exactly! Think of the living on that ship. I would love to have a house like that.

    • Hermitess of Narnia says:

      Yes, and they're all smiling! Having Aslan on the steering wheel is so nice, I'd never thought of it before, but adding it is good because Aslan rescues them from the Dark Island.

      Having the names of the sailors on the ship is wonderful.
      I saw an American WWII plane once on which all the war pilots had written their names at the front. I didn't realize there were so many pilots for each plane. I think this has the same feel.

  5. glumPuddle says:

    Yep, that is definitly Rhindon that Caspian is holding. Hmmm.
    Still love the look of the ship.

    • Lady Galadriel says:

      Well, the ship looks more "eloquent" than I had previously thought….

      On Rhindon: sounds like they are turning it into the 'sword of Kings' from LOTR after all. (How I wish Narnia could have some originality from LOTR! *shakes head exasperated*)

    • Reepicheep, Knight of Narnia says:

      Hurray!!! I was so totally hoping that Caspian would have Rhindon in this one (seeing that Peter gave it to him)! I'm so excited for this movie! πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

    • Tarwe, the Narnian Elf says:

      Awesome! I love the pictures! That is so exciting that Caspian has Rhindon. Maybe its name with finally get mentioned in the movie! I hope that the 'Dawn Treader' does not get dismantled; I want to see it sometime! All I really know is that December 10 can not come soon enough! Sail on!

  6. JadistarkilleR says:

    YES! they're doing production blogs. and i thought they're gonna leave us high and dry this time around given how they (relatively) spoiled us at Cleveland Point.

    kepp 'em comin! blogs sure makes a year's worth of waiting more bearable πŸ™‚

    • emma says:

      Lol it sure does! It feels weird being so out of the know now, because at when they were filming here, I could just go down to Cleveland Point anytime I wanted and now I can't just go down to the set

  7. Queen Lucy says:

    Wow. All three pictures took my breath away. Especially the second. What a beautiful ship!

  8. TumnusTheBrave says:

    hey i just sent this 3 pics in from facebook in like 45 minutes before it was posted-lol

  9. martinthewarrior says:


  10. narnian1 says:

    love those pics, my favorite is Caspian with Edmnund

  11. iLiveInNarnia says:

    ahaha I love the pic of Skandar and Ben! πŸ˜€

  12. Wow! Finally, some real news. Just think, we'll be all giving a review in another year. Let's hope it's 5 stars! Beautiful pictures!

  13. Quinlin says:

    I can't wait for that day… These pics are just a reminder of how spectacular the movie will be!

  14. Bother Eustace says:

    Nice! I love production blogs. And finally we know what the inscription on the mast is!

  15. WillMoseleyandSkandarcrush! says:

    Finally something popped up about Edmund and Lucy! I've been waiting SO long for this! But to get to the subject: I'm glad there are pics! Great stuff! Georgie Henley is so pretty!

  16. tenthofthatname says:

    Echoing the picture of Caspian and Edmund, especially because he's holding Rhindon. Love it.

  17. decarus says:

    It was good to get some photos though they weren't really that interesting. At least it's a start.

  18. Kate says:

    Does anyone else think the view behind the wheel in picture #3 looks a little fake?

    • bkey says:

      Yes, but its probably just preliminary work, nothing like what we will see in the final cut of the film. Remember, they still have a year now to work on all the visual effects.

    • emma says:

      no its not fake at all! I live around that area and go there all the time and I swear that is what it looks like no visual effects or anything – what you are seeing is what the bay really looks like.

    • decarus says:

      It's just the lighting. It is weird how your eyes get used to filtered lighting and when it isn't it doesn't look right.

  19. Warrior 4 Jesus says:

    The photos are great and the idea of a production blog excites me. How do we join the blog on FaceBook? Thanks

  20. farsight1 says:

    I wonder when they're going to have narnia.com back online or set up another official movie site. Will they just keep using NarniaFans and Facebook to release all the info?

  21. Lucy P. says:

    This is pretty sweet- in both senses!

  22. Narniamiss says:

    No doubt about that being Rhindon, hmm? I don't mind too much.
    Wow, these pictures are…really, really good. I can't wait to see more!

  23. Silver the Wanderer says:

    AHHHHHH!!!!!! Official pictures!!! They look amazing! I'm sooo happy right now. I LOVE the one with Lucy!

    • narnian resident says:

      yeah i do too but sometimes i cant figure out if her hair is red or brown, because in this pic it looks red but in other pics it looks brown. idk

  24. narnian resident says:

    wow this was so deep, i love it! indeed the Dawn Treader is certainly a symbol of the power of a team. if it werent for them, we certainly wouldnt have such a magnificent ship to always enjoy in a most beloved movie.

  25. narnian resident says:

    gosh i just love the picture of georgie on the balcony, its so amazing! first of all, georgie is so pretty! omg she so grown up! and i love how you can see the Dawn Treader name right there below her. its all just so beautiful! i just love how caspian is holding rhindon in the first pic. and the pic of the wheel is so cool!

  26. Fire vien says:

    Ben and Georgie look so different!!!

  27. Laura Elizabeth says:

    Caspian with long hair? Ugh…
    But I really like the helm.

  28. Fire vien says:

    Is that Peter's sword Caspian is holding!!

  29. Feather~Light~Heart says:

    Cool pics I especially like Georgie's! Ohmygoodness I can't wait for products to come out – no i can't wait for the movie to come out!!!! πŸ˜€ *squee*

  30. Narnia Lover says:


  31. iLiveInNarnia says:

    I love how they have all the names written! It's awesome that they honor all who help make this loved book come alive. Thank you to all the cast/crew who were a part of the filming, and thank you to all those who are currently working on it (animations and such). FOR NARNIA

  32. Aslan's my homeboy says:

    Love the pics of skandar ben and georgie

  33. Duffleglum says:

    I am blown away at how detailed that ship is!!
    You guys make up for your small changes to the story by such dedication to bringing the pieces in the story to life!

  34. Mirima Rosetrader says:

    Wow, that was beautiful. That dedication was wonderful. I'm so glad it was made. I love the pictures too. Thank you to all the crew who worked on the Dawn Treader and the film!It means so much to me and I bet all the other fans on this site and others! The ship is magnificent! Long live Aslan and sail on Voyage of the Dawn Treader!

  35. Lady Polly says:

    their sooo beautiful.

  36. StoryGirl says:

    AWESOME!!!! πŸ˜€

  37. Anonymous Narnian says:

    The dedication is very sweet and appropriate of Caspian's love for Narnia. Sail on, VDT production blog!

  38. andr7450 says:

    These pics are amazing and goregous! wow!

  39. Mark Friedrich says:

    I love the picture of Georgie

  40. muchas gracias por la infirmacion que me mandaron de su pelicula de las cronicas de Narnia la trabesia del viajero de Alba eh bye.

  41. Violamom says:

    Major squeeage in our household! πŸ˜€ But I'm puzzled by all the fuss over Caspian holding Rhindon–Peter gave it to him in the last movie, after all. Makes perfect sense to me that he'd use it. Making it a museum exhibit would go against the spirit of Peter's gift to him, imho. Sail on Dawn Treader!!!!!!

  42. kate Achey says:

    I can,t wait when it comes out And the trailer

  43. Anna's Sister says:

    Freaking out here!!! These picture are so AWESOME!!

  44. GlimGlum says:

    Great to read about those who put the Dawn Treader together. And nice new pictures too. πŸ˜€ Sail on VDT!

  45. pselpevensie says:

    the dedications are so cool! i can't wait to see the movie in 376 days!

  46. Peepicheep says:

    Thank you for posting them (the pictures). Well done, Aslan is on the move.

  47. narniafan4ever β™₯ says:

    Wow….Those pics are making me really excited. I love them! πŸ˜€ Now if only they would bring out the trailers soon… *hint hint* πŸ˜€

  48. Anonymous Narnian says:

    AHH! The pictures just showed up on my computer. The one of Lucy takes my breath away. They were right, the ship is more magical than the first pictures. I love.

  49. Tygr says:

    Not entirely certain, but I'd lay 10-to-1 odds that's NOT Edmund with Caspian. Looks like we're seeing Eustace there to me, and the King's trying to teach him how to handle a sword.

    Love the pic of the stern with Lucy, but I'm a little concerned about the pointy-ness of the handles on the helm… Surely wouldn't want to get tossed onto those during a gale!

    • Talvi says:

      replying to Tyger – Sure looks like Skandar to me — and I highly doubt the official people would get their captions wrong. *shrugs* just saying. πŸ˜›
      Hmm… would love to see a shot of all of them together soon!! I love the ship so much! <3

  50. Neverland child says:

    The helm looks so cool

  51. Neverland child says:

    Oh my gosh! Lucy looks so so…. old

  52. Neverland child says:

    King caspin look funny

  53. King Skandar the Just says:

    wow…that's pretty awesome! That's such a cool idea, putting the creators on to the sail!
    Nice pictures! I'm so glad that we have some
    pictures of Skandar!

  54. Puddleglum says:

    At last, to know what was written on the mast! I was wondering after seeing the writing on some of the other photos, but could never make out all of what was said.
    A most noble act, to place the name's of those who participated in all the making of His Majesty's ship on the mast.
    Clear skies, and a calm sea Dawn Treader. And to all who labored to send Her on Her voyage, May the Creatore of the Sun, wind and stars bless you, and the work of your hands.

  55. narnia fan7 says:

    Cool!!! the ship look AWESOME!!!!!

  1. November 25, 2009

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by NarniaWeb.com, Katie Lopez. Katie Lopez said: !!! Next December. RT @NarniaWeb: Official Production Blog Released! Check out the first three pics from Dawn Treader: http://bit.ly/8rZvzD […]