Disney and Walden Media have confirmed to the Hollywood Reporter that Disney will not co-produce/co-finance the next "Narnia" movie, "The Voyage of the Dawn Treader."
The third entry in the series, based on the classic works of C.S. Lewis, was set to start shooting in spring 2009 for a May 2010 release.
This puts the talent up for grabs. Michael Apted was to direct. "Prince Caspian’s" Ben Barnes, Georgie Henley, William Moseley and Anna Popplewell were to return for the third film.
Walden has a relationship with the Lewis estate and will try to find "Treader" a new partner.
But partnership on a "Narnia" movie will require a chunk-a-change. "Caspian," filmed in the Czech Republic, Mexico and New Zealand, cost $200 million. "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" was shot mostly in New Zealand for $180 million.
Why did Disney bail? Could be as simple as investment versus potential return.
According to the Reporter, "Lion" jumped to $292 million domestically and an additional $453 million internationally in 2005. "Prince Caspian," however, grossed $141 million in North America and an additional $278 million internationally, far less than the "Lion’s" share.
Plus, children’s fantasies aren’t doing so well.
Remember "The Golden Compass."
Yeah, we wish we didn’t either.