Did you know C.S. Lewis opposed a live action version of Narnia?

In a newly published letter written in 1959 to BBC producer Lance Sieveking, Lewis says:

“Anthropomorphic animals, when taken out of narrative into actual visibility, always turn into buffoonery or nightmare — at least with photography. Cartoons (if only Disney did not combine so much vulgarity with his genius!) wld. be another matter. A human, pantomime, Aslan wld. be to me blasphemy.”

I find it interesting that an author would reject a film adaptation of his work; certainly uncommon by today’s standards, I think. Authors would love to sell their books to Hollywood. The money Hollywood has to spend is far greater than the money publishers have. And after all, writers hope to make a living with their written work. Artistic integrity might be an issue for some, but a million buck is a million bucks.

It almost sounds like Lewis doubted the capability of the technology which, in 1959, was way,way less than what could be done today. I wonder how he’d feel if he had seen Lord of the Rings and had witnessed what could be done. Would he change his tune?

Filed under: BooksMovies

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