Why Netflix Wants Narnia | Talking Beasts

A few weeks ago, Kasey Moore from What’s on Netflix reported that Netflix was eyeing Greta Gerwig to direct two Chronicles of Narnia movies (Netflix has not confirmed or denied this). In this episode, hear the story from Kasey himself as well as some speculation about what Netflix might be planning for their Narnia adaptations.

Also check out WhatsOnNetflix.com’s Narnia info page.

7 Responses

  1. I’m so wowed and glad that Narniaweb is able to contact people who are significant to the unfolding Netflix story – and bring us interviews! Thankyou!

    I am glad you asked who his source was – it’s understandable that Kacey couldn’t provide that info.

    I had not thought of the possibility of animated Narnia content on Netflix aimed at kids! That would be fun to see. And there was some news saying they would be live action. Maybe that was only part of the story.
    If they do animated series, there’s two styles I would prefer. One is the blend of 3d and 2d that is in Arcane. The other would be 2D. I don’t want cheap 3D animation like Veggietales in the House. And that would be cool, to go, “I’ve got 25 minutes, let’s watch some (animated) Narnia.”

    I also had not realised that we could see the future Narnia movies released in theatres too! That would be epic!

    On the subject of Greta Gerwig, I hope she makes it interesting. If she’s not hugely into CGI, then I’m happy with excellent animatronics and creature work. If done rightly.

    I hope we see a trailer more than 1 month out!!

    We saw the Matilda Musical trailer 2 or 3 months out, but that doesn’t seem preferable either! lol.

  2. Icarus says:

    He is right to mention “franchises” as being the key thing that Netflix is after in order to compete in the Streaming Wars, however the problem Netflix has is that despite having had almost 10 years of developing their own Original content, their overly quick trigger on cancelling shows has meant that very few of their own properties have been able to develop into fully fledged franchises.

    Far too many promising series have been canned after just 1 or 2 seasons, and when coupled with the company’s completely erratic and scatter-shot approach to development, it has left them with an in-house catalogue that feels decidedly patchy and uneven.

    I do hope that we will eventually start to see a change in tact from the company on this front, but even Kacey here is citing the difference in leadership styles between Cindy Holland and her successor as being a critical factor, therefore perhaps Narnia would be better off waiting for a return to a more stable leadership platform who are fully committed to cultivating and curating their content if it wants to get a better shot at long-term success.

  3. Col Klink says:

    I’m really grateful to Kasey Moore for this interview. He did a great job and seems really friendly and helpful….so I’m really scared this comment will sound like I’m bashing him. That’s NOT what I want to do at all. It’s the Netflix producers, if anyone, that are annoying me. And that could be just my perceptions of them, not the actual people.

    But it’s really disheartening that a non-fan observer with no particular stake in this game is echoing the most cynical speculations I’ve read in this comments section. From what Moore can tell, Netflix just randomly bought Narnia because it’s fantasy, something that it has in common with plenty of other books, and they needed a fantasy. It sounds like they may not have even read it! And the reason he thinks they asked Greta Gerwig is that she’s very sought-after right now, not that she’d be good for Narnia specifically. It sounds like they were just pulling the names of acclaimed directors out of a hat!

    But, again, that could be just Kasey Moore’s faulty impressions. Neither he nor we know what’s going on behind closed doors or in the producer’s heads. Maybe they have got a great vision for a Narnia series. (At this point, I’d be pleasantly surprised if they had any vision for a Narnia series at all.) Say what you will about Walden Media being too commercially driven though, at least they had the decency to try to court book fans. Even lip service about respecting the source material is more than Netflix is giving.

    I’m not surprised that Netflix is the one courting Greta Gerwig rather than the other way around. But I am a little surprised that she didn’t immediately refuse. Narnia doesn’t seem like something she’d want to do. (Not a faithful adaptation anyway.) Maybe the fact that they’re still negotiating means that she’s attracted to the idea. Or maybe she’s just desperate for money. We’ll see.

  4. Icarus says:

    If you want a good example of what “Netflix done right” looks like, go and watch Guillermo Del Toro’s recent Pinnochio adaptation on Netflix. It’s the most artistically pure, uncynicial, and entirely uncompromised artistic vision I’ve seen of a beloved children’s story. I don’t think I could find a single bad word to say about it.

    It even has a fairly touching moment of religious symbolism which is indicative of Del Toro’s catholic upbringing, and tied in beautifully with the story.

    If Narnia was produced with even half the care and attention and love that Del Toro poured into this project, I don’t people would be having any concerns about Netflix.

    That said, due to the length of time associated with Stop Motion animation, it is more than likely that Netflix’s involvement in the project’s development came under the old leadership regime when they were a little bit more hands off – but equally it could perhaps show that when you get a genuinely visionary powerhouse director like Del Toro or perhaps Gerwig, even the New Netflix leadership are sensible enough to just let them do their thing.

  5. I hope that it is the latter! I hope that the current Netflix leadership gives skilled creators the ability to create, without interference.

    I wonder if Netflix has panicked due to the streaming service competition and made some rash decisions. I saw a great video (which was shared on the Talking Beasts FB group I think) which discussed some issues with Netflix’s model that meant Russian Doll (and similar) are not talked about as much, since they release them in one dump, and the online chatter dies down quickly. For a franchise to endure, it needs to be talked about. Hence why Disney Plus and Amazon Prime are releasing shows weekly.

    I hope that Netflix listens to some of the commentators and fans who seem to think of changes that could help their creations and even their business.

  6. Yerdif says:

    Id like to to add my thoughts to what’s been said. I’m frankly very scheptical of Netflix’s doing an old-school literature with a firmly Biblical world view like Narnia justice. After the Anne with an E fiasco, I was extremely put off. Perhaps what you said about Pinnochio, Icarus, is a good sign, but it might just be the director in that case. I do hope they don’t put in feminism in some way. Rings of Power was bad enough, from the reviews I watched. Anyway, I’m just a little scheptical of modern entertainment, especially when they work on older stories. I hope something good results though, but I’m not holding my breath.

  7. I watched this movie but still can’t find it on Netflix to watch again. It’s boring.