Dafne Keen who wowed everyone with her performance in 'Logan' will play the lead role of Lyra Belacqua. A second season has already been commissioned
With Game Of Thrones coming to a close, HBO has dropped the teaser of His Dark Materials, an adaptation of the book trilogy by Philip Pullman hoping to ease fantasy fictions into the new series. The book is being adapted by the BBC will be distributed in the US by HBO. The series will have eight episodes. The dark tone of the trailer has got us all excited and is also backed by a solid cast of James McAvoy, Ruth Wilson, Dafne Keen, and Lin Manuel Miranda, CNET reported.
Dafne Keen will play the lead character Lyra Belacqua. Dafne Keen who stunned us with her performance as Laura/X-23 mutant in Logan is sure to make her mark as Lyra. Dafne Keen held her own as she shared screen space with Hugh Jackman in Logan. James McAvoy will play Lord Asriel; Ruth Wilson as Mrs. Coulter and Lin-Manuel Miranda will feature as Lee Scoresby.
The book follows the journey of young orphan Lyra Belacqua involving parallel universes filled with magical creatures and evil. The teaser shows us a peek into the intense, dark work of Lyra. The trailer also shows Lyra peeking through a cupboard which is the first scene of the book trilogy that sets rolling a whole set of gripping events. The series will have worlds of its own and broad philosophical concepts to cover including the original sin.
The title of the series His Dark Materials is an inspiration from a poem by John Milton called Paradise Lost that has religious themes. The three books in the series are Northern Lights (1995), The Subtle Knife (1997), and The Amber Spyglass (2000). The first installment Northern Lights was released in America as the Golden Compass.
BBC has already announced the series will have a second season consisting of eight episodes. Tom Hooper, who directed period films The King’s Speech and Les Miserables, will be helming the first two episodes and should fit right into the genre. The screenplay is being written by Jack Thorne who helped adapt Harry Potter and The Cursed Child for the stage based on the story he developed with JK Rowling.
It’s not the first time the series is being adapted, but the 2007 movie The Golden Compass didn’t quite have the punch the book offered, and thus the following installments were subsequently canceled, leaving fans hanging. The Golden Compass was supposed to be the first installment and was backed by a star cast of Daniel Craig, Nicole Kidman, Ian McKellan, and Sam Elliott. The movie did go onto win the 2008 Academy Award for Best Visual Effects but it never really left its mark at the box office or make an impression with critics. The New York Times called it a heavily condensed script and felt the pacing of the movie was very rushed.
The makers will look to make most of the TV format that helps them sketch out the story in detail. "The advantage of television is that we can slow down. We've got the luxury of having time to get to know Lyra, and spend time in her world," s writer Jack Thorne told CNET. It was the format and pacing of the TV that appealed to George RR Martin as opposed to seeing it crudely done for the big screen.
The Golden Compass was filmed keeping in mind a largely a young audience and was brightly lit with vivid colors. If the teaser trailer of His Dark Materials is anything to go by, we can be rest assured that it’s going to be a much darker version that will cater to adults and especially those who grew up reading the books in the '90s and early 2000s.
The series much like the book is sure to invite controversy with ‘The Church’ being a dark religious institution with totalitarian shades and evil practices. Philip Pullman has been criticized many times for his interpretation of the Church and use of the name ‘Church’ for a dark institution. The 2007 movie Golden Compass avoided using the term ‘Church’ but still came in for heavy criticism with the Vatican newspaper l'Osservatore Romano observing in an editorial that "In Pullman's world, hope simply does not exist, because there is no salvation but only personal, individualistic capacity to control the situation and dominate events," The Daily Mail reported.
Catholic groups have described the series as "atheism for kids". Pullman, a self-confessed atheist once said, as per a report by The Sydney Morning Herald, “My books are about killing God." It remains to be seen how BBC and HBO choose to portray the ‘Church’ and use of its name in the series.