David Magee, who pushed a young boy and a tiger out to sea on a raft and whisked viewers into the head of Peter Pan’s creator, will once again deploy his gift for the fantastic by adapting “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Silver Chair” for the big screen.
Magee has been nominated for Oscars for his screenplays for “Finding Neverland” and “Life of Pi,” a biopic of author J.M. Barrie and an adaptation of Yann Martel’s examination of perilous ocean travel with big cats, respectively.
“I have always loved ‘The Chronicles of Narnia’ and I endlessly imagined myself finding my own passage into Narnia someday,” Magee said in a statement. “All these years later, I’m getting to fulfill that wish just a little bit.”
The first three Narnia films combined have grossed over $1.6 billion at the worldwide box office, but the future of the franchise was jeopardized after the third film in the series, “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader,” made less at the box office than its producers had hoped, grossing north of $400 million on a $155 million budget.
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Compounding matters, Walden Media, which produced the first three films, underwent a major restructuring this year and laid off a big chunk of its employees after announcing it will concentrate on third party productions.
However, a return to Narnia was assured after The C.S. Lewis Company announced in October that it would partner with The Mark Gordon Company to develop and produce the picture.
Mark Gordon, who has worked on “Saving Private Ryan” and “Wonder Boys,” and Douglas Gresham will serve as producers on the film, along with Vincent Sieber, the L.A. based director of The C.S. Lewis Company.