The Chronicles of Narnia is set to become a streaming franchise. The official Facebook page for C.S. Lewis’ beloved fantasy series announced Wednesday that Netflix has signed a multi-year deal with The C.S. Lewis Company to produce both series and films based on the Narnia world and its characters. Netflix confirmed the news with its own copy of the statement released to the press.
“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,” said 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.”
Gresham will serve as an executive producer on the proposed series and a producer on the proposed films, alongside Vincent Sieber and Entertainment One’s Mark Gordon.
The Narnia series is among the most beloved fantasy sagas of all time, encompassing seven novels published between 1950 and 1956. More than 100 million copies of the novels have been sold worldwide, and the first book — The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe — has been adapted for the screen several times, including a franchise-launching feature film in 2005. That franchise continued with films based on Prince Caspian and The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, and a film based on The Silver Chair was in development as recently as last year. It’s unclear at this point how Netflix’s approach will adapt each book, and how the series and films will interact.
The news comes hot on the heels of Amazon locking down a deal to adapt Robert Jordan’s beloved Wheel of Time novels into a streaming series of its own, even as it's also working on new stories set in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings universe. Streaming fantasy series with big budgets behind them are hot commodities for binge-watching providers right now, and Netflix is the latest company to make a big bet on that action.
What do you think of this news? Will you be watching?