Is there a place in Hollywood for a new Eragon movie?

BromYes.

That’s the short answer. What about a more detailed look at why it will work?

Harry Paved the Way

Fantasy is in; it has been for years, and it isn’t going away any time soon. With a flick of her wand, J.K. Rowling unintentionally kicked off a successful fantasy YA revolution, both in print and on the big screen. The Harry Potter films appealed to those who previously didn’t enjoy reading, as well as those outside of its target audience – adults. Harry Potter opened the door for massive young adult franchises, both in print and on the big screen. New readers flooded bookstores, and after devouring Rowling’s series, were hungry for more stories beyond Hogwarts’ gates.

Eragon was one of the earliest to the party, enjoying a wide publication in 2003 and quickly gaining traction with readers.  From there, many other book series took off, including Twilight and Hunger Games. Studios took note and quickly gobbled up the film rights, pushing them to the big screen for near-guaranteed success.

It’s no coincidence that Hunger Games, Twilight, and other franchises have gone on to dominate the box office. Their global audiences are vast and passionate, and the team behind each film paid careful attention to the source material, author, and existing audience when creating the movie. Sure, each of the franchises’ films had to take certain creative liberties when adapting the book, but those careful, well-thought-out changes are to be expected. And that’s where Eragon deviated from the tried-and-true method used by successful book-to-movie franchises: its creative liberties were not careful or well-thought out. It ignored its vast and passionate audience. It didn’t take it seriously.

The Avengers Enter the Ring

Since the release of Harry Potter, dozens of fantasy-based films have soared at the box office. A majority of these were adaptations, proving that it can be done well and make substantial amounts of money. Marvel burst into the arena, paving the way for a superhero takeover. While not strictly fantasy, these films hit the same audience as the aforementioned series and share many of the same elements and themes. Combined, these book and comic-based film franchises have grossed tens of billions of dollars. They’re unstoppable juggernauts, and it’s time for Eragon to join their ranks.

Post-Apocalyptic Dystopian Futures Take Over

We’re getting a bit tired of these dystopian movies, and we’re certainly tired of vampires and zombies. After the success of Twilight, everyone jumped on the vampire bandwagon. We saw books, films, television shows, video games, and more shoved down our throats. What happened? Vampires faded and zombies rose. With the exception of The Walking Dead, that fad has all but gone back to grave, likely due to the over-saturation vampires also suffered from.

And we’re getting there with post-apocalypse and dystopian media. Hunger Games was “the next Harry Potter,” and publishers and studios took note. They rushed to fill book stores and theaters with more of the same, leading us to sub-par films such as Divergent. But even those managed to find success, and that series continues to draw millions at the box office. The Maze Runner offered a fresh take on the genre, but we’re still left hoping studios will break the mold and venture into other territory. Perhaps…

Dragons!

Dragons have been a staple of fantasy since its inception. The Inheritance Cycle, Dragon Riders of Pern, Seraphina, Harper Hall, Dragons in Our Midst, A Song of Ice and Fire, and many more have held a special place on fantasy readers’ bookshelves. However, dragons never became a fad at the box office, and we believe this had a large impact on the fantasy creatures’ longevity in the fantasy world. The market isn’t over-saturated by dragon films, and that’s a very good thing.

Looking toward the box office, we immediately notice that there have been just nine movies featuring dragons over the past decade, with only a half of those heavily focusing on dragons: The Hobbit trilogy and the two How to Train Your Dragon films. That’s a market open for the taking! These nine films have grossed an astounding $6.3 billion alone over the past decade – and that’s not including DVD/BluRay sales, rentals, and streaming! Dragons are cash cows. Or cash dragons.

With The Hobbit having recently finished its run and How to Train Your Dragon 3 not due to hit theaters until summer 2018, we see an opportunity for Fox to jump in and dominate the dragon market. After all, dragons are more powerful than wizards, eat vampires and zombies for breakfast, and cause apocalypses. Those genres stand no chance.

The Game of Thrones Revolution

Like Harry Potter did for non-readers, Game of Thrones paved the way for a broader audience enjoying fantasy and dragons. Fans who have never taken part in fantasy franchises are flocking to the show in droves, making it one of cable’s most successful shows ever.

Playing on gritty, gory, and adult themes not previously seen in fantasy television and films, the show and its universe has managed to be taken seriously and avoid the cheesiness that often plagues media in that genre. While Eragon would avoid the hyper-sexual themes seen in Game of Thrones, its would benefit largely from following the show’s model, utilizing its brilliant delivery of epic politics, battles, dragons, locations, and character development to build a rich, mature, and gritty Alagaësia on the big screen.

A large thing to note is the fact that the Inheritance Cycle is a heavy magic world, in comparison to Game of Thrones‘ light magic world, providing a challenge for a potential Eragon film reboot: how to incorporate magic without deviating into cheesy territory, or feeling to capture a true mature feel to the world’s rich magic system. We’re sure a talented production team can figure that out.

Cornering the untapped Game of Thrones-like box office area would be a great move for Fox.

Wrapping Up

There’s a huge market ready to be conquered. The YA fantasy book world has showed no signs of slowing, book consumption is at an all-time high, and moviegoers are showing an endless hunger for films Eragon closely aligns to. We can’t help but wonder why Fox isn’t mulling the idea – it almost seems like a no-brainer.

Taking on a dark, mature, and gritty feel similar to Game of Thrones, incorporating the successful acting, special effects, and audience elements used to make hits out of Harry Potter and Hunger Games, and forging a unique path of success for itself, we know there’s a place in Hollywood for Eragon.

And that place is starving for dragons.

Want to see Eragon take its rightful place in Hollywood? We do too! We recently launched a petition asking Fox to consider rebooting the Inheritance Cycle film franchise. Over 33,000 fans have joined in by adding their signature. If you haven’t already, please consider doing so, and share the petition with your friends! Let’s make it happen.

  • Ross Smith

    I just finished the inheritance cycle in tears and I honestly friekin think that Christopher my man, besides the fact that your books are an absolute page turner, I urge you to take a fat shot on making this a series and not like that pathetic waste of popcorn, slushy and cash I spent on watching the movie. 😉 would be great to get another fantasy on the screens.

  • Doc

    Fox may have more luck getting this right by turning Eragon into a Television series. With the success that the Game of Thrones franchise has been experiencing, Many authors are considering this route over Films and Miniseries productions. Another option would be to try the route the DUNE franchise is experimenting with reference to as VideoBooks. Using slightly abridged narration, it’s basically like listening to an audiobook with voice acting while watching it all being animated before your eyes. Even Orson Scott Card has expressed an interest in this concept..

  • Guest

    What brilliant politics are there in Eragon? I can barely remember any political action that held any kind of sense or didn’t place Eragon on a pedestal. The politics in GoT work so well because of the levels of complexity they hold for a vast amount of characters, and the importance they hold to the plot — the implications of Lannister incest, the murder of Joffrey and how it affects everyone, the battle for the Iron Throne and everything it entails (including things like funding and the messy line of succession (Lannisters vs. Baratheons vs. Targaryens vs. Tyrells (just to name a few))) and why Dany’s still not moving much more towards Westeros and is instead way out in Meereen and dealing with her own struggles regarding the delivering and execution of social justice. Much of the show is devoted to its politics, and the simple fact is Eragon just doesn’t have that. There are barely any politics in the books, as that has been pushed aside to favour the battles and the blood and death rained down upon us by our 16 year-old sociopath “hero”/Marty Stu. Point being, GRRM has the political touch and has made it ESSENTIAL to the world — take away the politics, and the whole thing just falls to bits — CP doesn’t, and his works really suffer for it. Besides, with the world, it’s built for action, not for politics — take the politics in the IC away, and you pretty much have the same story. Having GoT-like politics would really be to any kind of film or TV adaptation of Eragon’s disadvantage. Tell me: did you enjoy the scenes with Galby in the movie? Because those are your politics, and they’re just not cut for the world.

    As for the grit, gore, and adult themes, they’re there in GoT because GoT is aimed at adults, whereas the IC is aimed for teenagers. Unless you want the IC to gain a solid R rating when, gathering from many of the previous comments a PG-13 one would be more appropriate, then GoT is not exactly a good model to want to base a potential IC TV show off. That pretty much strikes out the grit, gore, and adult themes.

    Dragons being cash cows — not necessarily. The Hobbit and How To Train Your Dragon were mentioned, and the reason why they pulled in so much money was because, in the case of The Hobbit, it already had a huge fanbase from the previous LOTR movies, and it’s been a beloved book for almost 80 years. HTTYD raked in money for the simple fact that they were good movies with solid, and original, plot lines, and had just enough of an edge to them to talk to the audience on two levels — on the levels of the kids and the adults viewing it. HTTYD was very cleverly constructed in that sense. The IC just lacks a clever undertone like HTTYD and doesn’t have enough swing behind it as The Hobbit and LOTR (and the Hobbit movies themselves weren’t exactly a critical success either). The IC suffers from the same reason why many other YA book-to-movie adaptations are suffering — because the stories don’t hold enough weight, nor enough logical sense, behind them to truly click and work.

  • BlondeWookie

    a tv series sounds cool…

  • Anthony

    It has probably already been said, but I loved the books and the movie was quite bad (from a consumers point of view). Make a new first one and keep to the book this time.

  • Charlie

    Make a tv series instead!

    • Nemo

      TV series would be too expensive becouse CGI cost a lot

      • Perry Israel Benard II

        not with Netflix or HBO.

        • Nemo

          you really want cheap CGI or you want CGI comparable too one from first movie becouse latter one is not cheap at all?

  • Lucas Peixoto Dantas

    A final with Eragon and Arya Together 😀

  • Hans

    “Dragons are cash cows” This is bullshit, The Hobbit Movies are so succesfull because they are the prequels to lotr and How to train your dragon is awesome because ist an awesome movie. If The Movie where shit, the dagons wouldnt help. game of thrones is loved because of his realness and awesome characters, eragon has nothing like that. because its an teenage book written by an teenager. The Eragon Movie is bad becaue the source material is bad, you cant make an adult movie out of a teenage book.

    • Nemo

      you preaty much told cold hearted truth, but i kinda liked movie better than books becouse inexperienced director tried to make it better he kinda made it better, but his lack of experience is shown in movie

      • Josip Skular

        What you said is your personal choice, and I won’t try to get chance your taste, but I have to say that it is not the fault of an “inexperienced director” it is the fault that the movie is way too short and the scenes show only the littlest parts of the story that are the most important, with a few changes that literally changed the whole concept of the book. I liked the books better, and I suggest that they keep with the original story with the reboot of the movie.

        • Josip Skular

          And I won’t try to change your taste*

    • Mario

      Seriously?? Did you read the books any at all?? The book has a great story line. The directors made a horrible adaptation of what could have been a great series

      • Nemo

        What great story line?

        Book as hans said it its an teenage book written by an teenager there are Mary sue characters, some main characters actions are quite evil, but are potrayed as heroic and lets not forget use of Deus Ex Machina

        • Albert

          That’s 99% of the books today…

    • Josip Skular

      If Eragon is a teenage book, then The Hobbit is a teenage book, The Lord of The Rings is a teenage book, and all the other fantasy books are teenage books. Please do not judge a book by what 3 people have said and by the age of the author. If an author is young, it doesn’t mean he/she isn’t a good author, Paolini is better than most writers today, but people judge his book only because he was young when he wrote it? I am a massive book lover, especially fantasy, and thanks to Paolini i even write some of my own, and in experience I can say that the Inheritance Cycle (of which Eragon is the first book) is the best book series I have ever read. Yes, better than any of J.R.R Tolkien’s works. So please, before you judge a book, read it. And stop saying that books suck if a young author writes them because it’s completely false, stop acting like you are a million times smarter and better because you are older (which I assume so), and read the book, because you are missing out on an amazing experience.

      And if the book, indeed, was intended for teenagers, then, in my opinion, that is just to state around what audience the book is, instead of just saying “For Everyone”. Many people who I know and are much older love the book, and I, as a 15 year old, love the book aswell.

      A book’s audience is not judged by the reader or the author’s age, it is judged on the taste of the reader and the quality of the book.

      • Nemo

        Josip its the quality of the book that is showing me that its writen by teenager, but come on you seriously compare it with J.J.R Tolken this is like comparing your personal painting with Da Vincis painting its the quality that is diffrent.

      • CuriousReader

        Most of your rant is very repetitive. That of the point that the author’s age didn’t affect the quality of the book while writing it. That is simply untrue.

        Eragon, a long with the rest of the series, as a book has a lot of legit flaws . A lot of the those flaws can be attributed to Paolini due to his first book and age. No, Paolini isn’t better than a lot of writers of today nor does it surpass Tolkien’s work.

  • tortuga

    Remake the first one… without John Malkovich

    • Chris Chamberlain

      what about Sean Bean as Galbatorix ???

      • Nolan Holley

        It does fit the bill that Sean Bean’s characters always have to die! 😉

    • Ross Smith

      Agreed

  • Nemo

    one more thing movie did not fail at all faliure would be if they would produce a loss but Fox earned $149.5 million from box office so movie was good but not the best and i liked the movie quite a lot.

  • Nosferatu

    Honestly, if Fox wont be willing to make 3+ hours movie this time, dont even bother. It will be a rushed disgrace all over again. Ofc, the original movie suffered from more than that, the Eragon actor was totally unlikeable, the lore wasnt followed because of lacking budget (humans instead of urgals or dwarfs :D) and ost among many other things was forgettable. But the lenght or better the shortness was the biggest issue. I even think they could cast Jeremy Irons again, he and Durza were the only good things about the movie.

    • Noah M

      I fucking hated Eragon’s actor. I felt as that ME MYSELF AND I would be better than that kid…..like for real

      • Nosferatu

        yeah he was supposed to be hunting in the mountains his entire life I imagined him to look somewhat wilder, this crybaby felt like he just came out of his weekly visit in beauty salon 😀

  • Nemo

    Ok, lets make myself clear i loved the books and the movie, but there are things movie did do better than book did:

    1.)Villagers in Carvahall-in books we are told they hate the empire becouse of high taxes and that they are ignored, but in movie they hate it becouse their kids are drafted forcefuly into army and this is better reason than hatting Empire for being ignored and high taxes for which Varden are at fault if they would not exist Empire would not rise a taxes.

    2.) final battle- in books he fight Durza on the ground like very good swordsman and magican, but in movie he fought him as dragon rider.

    3.Saphira- well yes she is alittle diffrent in aperance but what movie did better was her personality she sheamed to me more respectful towards eragon than the book version.

    • Adam

      1. The American rebels, who founded the U.S.A. hated Britian, not for drafting, but because of high taxes and no representation.
      2.In the movie he just kind of fly around everywhere, being ‘awesome’ or so it was supposed to seem.
      3. Saphira’s personality is her being a child, because she is. She is the youngest dragon in existence, and her personality should show it.

      Finally, its a book to movie adaption, meaning that the ovie is supposed to be based off the book. It should have the same plot arcs and meanings behind it since, its you know, based off the book. Deviating from the book that is supposed to be your source material starts to get into shady ground of just using the license to get the fans money, but not actually give them what you promised or what they wanted.

      • Nemo

        1.)cannot argue with that, but in my personal opinion movie had given them better reason to hate the Empire.
        2.)sorry did you even watched the movie becouse if you did you would know that Eragon andSaphira attacked Durza and his creature directly and it did not worked out very well(Saphira being mortally wounded) so they were loking for another plan to defeat their enemy and stayed out of reach of creature.
        3.) well she was disrespectful in all four books and she considers herself smart so age does not clears her

      • CuriousReader

        The taxation without representation was a minor thing in what started the American Revolution. It’s really silly saying that was the sole reason for the war in the first place. Same goes for the Inheritance Cycle as well.

        • Noah M

          Taxation wasn’t the only reason we went to war with britain…..it’s just the most well known

      • Chris Chamberlain

        1) They should combine the high taxes and drafting to explain the hatred for the empire.
        2) They should stick to the books version of the showdown against Durza … maybe add a little fighting/flying on dragonback then have Saphira get a minor injury to set up Eragon facing Durza on the ground.
        3) They should have Saphira actually grow properly in the movie , not just fly into some and magically grow faster … that was stupid !!!

  • Evan Moen

    Make it an AMC series lol

  • Evan Moen

    I think that the first movie was very underwhelming and I wouldn’t like to see another one like it ever unless they go back and redo the first one.

    • tortuga

      here here

  • Jonathan

    I’d love to see an Inheritance movie series done properly, but honestly… Am I the only one here who wouldn’t prefer a Firefly revival? 😉

  • Craig

    I am not getting tired of dystopian sci fi movies

  • Tom Martini

    i hope the hell not .. the first one movie i wanted to throw up it was that bad ! i ask for my money back ! …. let me get right to the point of thing he sold out his books for the money … HE IS A SELL OUT FOR THE MONEY … THATS ALL … if they would make the movie … no way in hell there going to make it by the book … if they did go the way of the lord of the rings way … with the writers and film maker … if not do not make it at all .

    • I don’t think you know what “sell out” means. I guess any person who has ever sold any of their creations for money is a sell out. 🙁

  • michael

    Game of Thrones is TOO dark to be a model for this!

  • Matt

    It was clear that the movie was going to be an epic failure from the start. I wish this site had actually done some real journalism at the time instead of fanboying over it and then later trying to defend this massive failure of a film. Fans and authors have to hold producers accountable. Paolini took a far too hands off approach to the film and paid the price dearly.

    • It’s almost like we were 16 year old fans at the time and not journalists! Seriously, the staff (myself included) were young, new to it, and as far from journalists as you could possibly get. I never did defend it, and if you listened to any of the podcasts we did at the same, I railed against it harder than anyone.

      Regarding Christopher taking a “hands off approach” – read about any movie adaptation. Authors have no rights when they sign over the rights to books. It does not happen. It is non-negotiable. Even authors such as JK Rowling, Susanne Collins, etc. have no say over their films. I think it’s a bit silly to assume any author would willingly let that happen to their work.

      But thanks for the comment!

      • Tor Sprø Søvik

        Rowling had MASSIVE influence on the films and it’s cast, she was a consultant, sometimes producer and had near-veto powers to changes she didn’t like. She was also aware of the mediated differences between books and films, which probably helped.

        • This is all true, and it’s the same for Hunger Games and Twilight. However, none of those were contractually guaranteed. They were all opportunities extended by the film production company but at no point were they legally obligated to listen to the author. They were just wise and chose to.

        • Jon Fredrik Andersen

          You’re right, but that’s because the producers CHOSE to give her power. That is an extremely unusual thing to do, and even in major sure-to-be blockbusters such as the Hunger Games and The Fault in our Stars and other YA movie adaptations has that been the case. There is no way we could expect Paolini to be given that right.

          • Tor Sprø Søvik

            She made some of these demands up-front, as an ultimatum. She also refused to sell the rights to the characters, allowing her to remain much controll over the movies. It’s also true that David Hayman gave her a lot of power, which I believe benefited the franchise. I’m hoping that any potential Eragon movies follows the same recipe. It’s not something I would like re-made for any price; I want a good remake.

  • HJ Nam

    I agree completely with Demacian Scout in that Eragon, Bartimaeus Trilogy, and Artemis Fowl should be played out in movies!
    As in Eragon, I mean a legit version; the first movie was a bomber! Just horrible. But just like Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter, the Inheritance Cycle can be made into a great movie series.

    • Demacian Scout

      yay somebody shares my taste in books

      • HJ Nam

        Ikr! They’re all good books.

    • DSammut

      I love the Bartimaeus Trilogy but i would hope that Hollywood would stay away from it. I just don’t think it would be able to be done right with the budget they would need for cgi. With all of the different forms that Bartimaeus among other characters take I think it would be to difficult. Not to mention it would be impossible for them to include the footnotes that were ever present in the books in a viable way, and not having that information would be a huge detriment to the product.

  • Demacian Scout

    I imagine they aren’t mulling it over due to the failure of the first one and the hit-or-miss nature of these book series adaptations. Eragon, along with the Bartimaeus Trilogy and Artemis Fowl, are some books I’d love to see played out on the big screen, or even an animated series like the one Deltora Quest managed to get.

    Hopefully we can get a second chance, though I feel the odds are stacked against it.

    On a sidenote, I did really enjoy the GBA version of Eragon. Besides the awkward ending and the muddy graphics, the game was a lot of fun to play, and way deeper than most movie tie-ins are.

  • donnam

    The first one was such a let down. The books are amazing,but that movie was just awful. It may need a gofundme to make another one happen.

  • Nolan Holley

    Lovely read, Mike. I think Alagaesia is actually ripe for a gritty setting that Game of Thrones does so well, and there are several leaders in the Inheritance Cycle that can play the many roles politically.

    I almost wonder what a Inheritance TV show would be like that didn’t even focus on Eragon as the sole main character, rather have alternating storylines among Eragon, Nasuada, Murtagh, Arya and the villains.

    • Byron Frank

      The Inheritance series just doesn’t have the same political mucking about that GoT does. There is certainly enough room to add it in, though it would change things a bit. Eragon is primarily about the fantastic nature of magic and epic battles while GoT is primarily about the darkness of man and politics with a dab of magic tossed in. I think a honest and accurate Eragon adaption would stand up fine on its own. It doesn’t need to become something else.

      • Nolan Holley

        Good points! I guess it’s just fun sometimes to wonder, “what if?”.

    • michael

      Game of thrones is too dark to be a model.

  • Angela

    Has anyone suggested this idea to Fox yet or is everyone getting their hopes up for nothing?

    • Belle

      That’s why there’s a petition, to get this ideas directly to fox. If you haven’t signed yet do it now, with a lot of signatures we might have a chance!