will it finally happen

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.

Block

Have a burning question for Christopher? Ask in the comments!

twitter-interview-questionsReaders are always thinking up new questions to ask Christopher, and now’s your chance to submit a question to be included in future interviews with the Inheritance Cycle author! If your question is used, we’ll credit you (using your comment name) during the interview!

Here are some suggestions on questions not to ask (as he won’t be able to answer):

  • When will we see a new book set in Alagaësia? (Learn more about the book on our “Book V and Beyond” page.)
  • What will happen in Book 5?
  • When is the next Eragon/Inheritance Cycle movie coming out? (Read our recent article for an answer to this question.)
  • How can I contact you? (You can find information on how to contact Christopher on our “Contacting Christopher” page.)

We don’t have any specific dates for upcoming interviews, but the Paolini family releases a monthly Q&A with Christopher on their official website, Paolini.net.

 

Touring Alagaësia: Travel Guide to The Hadarac Desert

Ever wonder what it would be like to vacation in the realm traveled by Eragon and Saphira?  In a new look at the fantasy world of Inheritance, we’ll traverse the Alagaësia atlas, exploring different lands while planning a trip to each destination.

hadarac post card copy

Hail and Well Met, Traveler!

Welcome to the first stop on our tour through Alagaësia: the Hadarac Desert.  We’ll be providing you with all of the information and tips needed to have an enjoyable fantasy holiday!

SIGHTS

Be prepared for hot, dry weather by day and frigid temperatures at night. But don’t let the climate scare you away! Deserts can be harsh, but with the right preparation, you and your companions will enjoy a safe journey!

If there is one sight to behold on a visit to the Desert, make it the mountain range of Du Fells Nángoröth, located centrally in the Hadarac stretch.  Known as home to the first dragons, this small range of mountains at one time housed disgorged Eldunarì energy stores of these ancestral dragons.

Visitors interested in extending their trip can venture east toward the Beor Mountains, seen on the horizon throughout the entirety of your journey. These mountains are home to the dwarves and various awe-inspiring beasts. Continue reading this article…

 

over25000fansExcited about the idea of a rebooted Inheritance Cycle film franchise? We are too! Join the over 25,000 fans who have signed the Eragon movie petition by adding your signature!

Yesterday we explored the first batch of things we believe Fox needs to do to get hypothetical future Inheritance Cycle films right. Of course, we believe the only way to move forward would be to reboot the series – something that will allow the studio a chance to right wrongs and properly tell the story.

The first part of our article proposed rebooting the series, getting Christopher involved, finding a team passionate about the story, hiring a director and writer with experience in adapting epic fantasy book worlds, not using a large budget as a crutch, not straying far from the plot of the books, looking at the big picture, and possibly splitting the books into multiple films. If you haven’t already, we recommend reading the first article before continuing with this one!

Part two recommends focusing on the characters and their development, paying attention to the “small stuff,” aiming for a PG-13 rating, and more! Continue reading this article…

 

article-headerExcited about the idea of a rebooted Inheritance Cycle film franchise? We are too! Join the over 25,000 fans who have signed the Eragon movie petition by adding your signature!

Fox stumbled with Eragon and the mistakes cost them a franchise. Before we dive deeper into these mistakes and how those mistakes led to the demise of the film, we’re going to explore the more important question: If the Eragon movie is rebooted, what does Fox need to do to get it right?

We recently asked fans on Facebook what they think needs to be done to get it right. We’re coupling some of the best responses with ideas and analysis of our own. Continue reading this article…

 

Reflecting at the Tomb of a Dragon Rider

Past the blackened peaks of Helgrind and across the glassy span of Lake Leona lies an incredible epitaph for a legendary Dragon Rider.  Upon a cliff, encased in a cocoon of diamond, is where Brom the Rider was laid to rest during the tragic events of Eragon. Both Eragon and Saphira left their marks of respect where Brom was buried, with Eragon writing a small dedication and Saphira infusing the original sandstone tomb with magic, transforming it into diamond.

Though he didn’t know it at the time, Eragon had actually buried his father.  Despite this lack of knowledge, Eragon still was moved enough by Brom’s teachings and friendship to pay eternal respects to a man he looked up to as a father figure, writing a message at Brom’s tomb:

Brom the Rider Grave Engraving Continue reading this article…

 

over20000Our community spoke clearly: we want to see the Inheritance Cycle film franchise rebooted!

It’s been nearly nine years since the release of Eragon on the big screen, leaving fans less than satisfied. Fox has been radio silent on the future of the franchise since.

Last Thursday, we released an article exploring when we will possibly see the Inheritance Cycle rebooted. We also released a petition imploring Fox, the film rights holder, to reboot the franchise.

The response was overwhelming – well beyond anything we expected. Over 4,000 fans signed the petition in its first day, with the count now totaling over 20,000. In under 24 hours, we saw:

  • 720,000 fans reached reached on social media
  • 17,100+ likes on Facebook
  • 2,400+ comments on Facebook
  • 2,200+ shares on Facebook
  • 93 retweets on Twitter
  • 86 favorites on Twitter

Since then, those numbers have increased even further and our campaign is only just getting started.

  • We hit 5,500 signatures on Friday
  • We hit 19,000 signatures on Saturday
  • We hit 20,000 signatures on Sunday
  • 1,139,000 fans reached on social media since Thursday
  • 32,077 status “likes” on Facebook since Thursday
  • 3,964 status comments on Facebook since Thursday
  • 5,518 status shares on Facebook since Thursday
  • 143 retweets and 209 favorites on Twitter since Thursday
  • 403 notes on Tumblr since Thursday
  • 682,000 visits to Shur’tugal since Thursday

Later this week, we’ll be exploring how Fox should go about making a reboot in a new article. We also have several additional articles planned, including:

  • At what point did the film begin to lose its heart, and how could it have recovered?
  • Which movies followed in Eragon’s footsteps, and were their mistakes similar to those of the Eragon movie?
  • What elements in movies such as Hunger Games, Twilight, Fault in Our Stars, and Maze Runner appeal to their audiences?
  • Is there a place in Hollywood for an Inheritance Cycle movie reboot?
  • What other mediums could the Inheritance Cycle work well in?

Most importantly, we need as many fans as possible to show their support for a full reboot of the franchise by signing our petition. If you haven’t already, please consider adding your signature. If you have friends who are fellow readers, ask them to join in too!

Let’s show Fox that we are passionate about the series and fully stand behind a proper reboot!

View and sign the petition!

 

When will we see the next Inheritance Cycle movie?

Eragon movie

Get involved! Join thousands of fellow fans by signing our petition to Fox, encouraging them to reboot the movie franchise!

It’s the second most asked question we get here on Shur’tugal (“When will we see Book 5?” comes in first). It isn’t hard to understand why: the 2006 Eragon movie was a less-than-stellar take on a book we are all passionate about. Mistakes were made, the movie didn’t quite resonate with audiences, and hopes of a film franchise faded.

Let’s address the big question straight away: there is no news from Fox regarding a future film. The studio has been silent for nearly a decade. However, future films are still possible, and it is our hope that the recent success of similar films (which we explore below) may help open their eyes to the series’ big screen potential.

Fox’s purchase of the film rights was first announced in early 2004, aimed at a 2005 release. Filming began in the summer of 2005, with the intent to release the film exactly one year later. Bumped from June, 2006, the film hit theaters in December, 2006.

The film industry often defines a “flop” as a film that fails to earn back its budget. In the case of Eragon, the movie more than doubled its budget of $100 million (not including its marketing budget, rumored to have been substantial). Eragon opened to $23 million in the United States, earning a total of $75m during the entirety of its domestic run. The film saw success overseas, grossing $174.4m for a total worldwide take of $249m. (These totals do not include DVD sales or rentals, where Eragon is rumored to have done quite well.)

The box office wasn’t the film’s only problem; critics panned the film and audiences were on the fence. Rotten Tomatoes, a popular review aggregator, offers a critic score of just 16% and average audience rating of 47%. (Other films’ critic scores: Hunger Games – 86%, Maze Runner – 63%, and even Twilight scored 47%.)

Reviewing audience scores and the total box office take leads us to a major conclusion: the film did have an audience. We’re left wondering what the film’s true potential would have been if the work were approached differently. Could the franchise have matched the success of more recent book-to-movie adaptations, such as Twilight, Hunger Games, and Harry Potter? We think so.

We’re closing in on a decade of no news about a new Inheritance movie. We know that Fox had high hopes for Eragon, intending from the start to build a powerful film franchise based on the series and that these hopes were never realized.

Much has changed over the past nine years. Movie studios (Lionsgate, Sony, Fox) have made a key observation: staying true to the formula that made books successful will often lead to box office success. Moving away from what fans loved in the books—such as seen in Percy Jackson, Beautiful Creatures, and Mortal Instruments—saw results similar to Eragon. These movies underline the importance of taking the adaptation’s source material seriously.

The book-to-movie franchises that have nailed it over the past decade, such as the Maze Runner (James Dashner, produced by Fox), The Hunger Games (Susanne Collins, Lionsgate), and The Fault in Our Stars* (John Green, Fox), all had key things in common: the authors were regularly consulted (in John Green’s case, the author was allowed to live on set); they remained in touch with the film’s fan base, working to keep them passionate, excited, and happy with the results; and lastly, the studios gave the films proper treatment, respecting their universes and avoiding the cheesiness that often plagues fantasy and sci-fi adaptations.

*While The Fault in Our Stars is not a fantasy movie, it highlights the importance of working with the author, staying true to the source material, and being loyal to its fans. The film grossed $305m on a $12m budget.

Don’t ignore your audience, don’t disregard the heart of the source material, and work closely with the author – they know their world better than anyone!

Moviegoers are hungry for well-done fantasy/sci-fi, and especially dragons!

  • How to Train Your Dragon and How to Train Your Dragon 2 (DreamWorks Animation/Fox), a series based on the premise of dragons and dragon riders, grossed a combined $1.137 billion in the box office. (critic review average of 98%, 92%, respectively)
  • Peter Jackson’s three part Hobbit adaptation, at its core a fantasy trilogy featuring a dragon, grossed $2.917 billion (critic review average of 64%, 74%, 70% respectively)
  • The Narnia film trilogy launched with a smash hit in The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, which grossed $745 million. Its two follow-ups grossed $419.6 and $415.6, for a total series take of $1.58 billion. (critic review average of 76%, 67%, 49% respectively)
  • The Lord of the Rings trilogy conquered the box office with a combined $2.917 billion gross. (critic review average of 91%, 96%, 95% respectively)
  • Hunger Games, Maze Runner, Divergent, Rise of the Guardians, and more total a box office gross in the billions.
  • Another sign of an existing hunger for fantasy: HBO’s massive hit, Game of Thrones, demonstrates that a low-magic fantasy world filled with dragons, battles, and epic politics can attract tens of millions of viewers. It’s one of the most successful cable television shows of all time.

It isn’t impossible to make a book-to-movie adaptation that wins over existing fans and makes new ones. In fact, studios seem to be mastering the method as they listen to what the fan communities love about the universe and thoughtfully consider what makes these books the success they were to begin with.

There’s a lot left to explore behind Fox’s Eragon. Here’s a preview of what we’ll be discussing in the coming weeks:

  • At what point did the film begin to lose its heart, and how could it have recovered?
  • Which movies followed in Eragon’s footsteps, and were their mistakes similar to those of the Eragon movie?
  • What elements in movies such as Hunger Games, Twilight, Fault in Our Stars, and Maze Runner appeal to their audiences?
  • Is there a place in Hollywood for an Inheritance Cycle movie reboot?
  • What other mediums could the Inheritance Cycle work well in?
  • If the series is remade, how should they go about it?

While you wait for our next Eragon movie article, be sure to sign our petition to 21st Century Fox, the film rights holder, encouraging them to reboot the Inheritance Cycle on the big screen!

 

Join Christopher for two book signing events in Utah!

Christopher has announced two back-to-back book signings and events for readers in Utah!

Five Kingdoms: Crystal Keepers launch event!

On March 13th, Christopher will join authors Brandon Mull, Brandon Sanderson, Richard Paul Evans, and Chad Morris for the launch of Mull’s Crystal Keepers, the third book in his Five Kingdons series.

The free event will be held at the Cottonwood High auditorium in Murray, UT, and will feature a comedy show involving all five authors, plus several other talented comedians. A big book signing will follow the show!

More information can be found on the event’s Facebook page.

Signing with Arwen Dayton (Seeker), Rachel Hartman (Seraphina), and Christopher!

On March 14th, Christopher will join Seraphina author Rachel Hartman and Seeker author Arwen Dayton for a book signing! The event will take place at the Barnes & Noble in Orem, UT at 2:00 pm.

More information can be found on the Barnes & Noble event page.

 

Thanks for an amazing 11 years, and here’s to many more!

shurtugal-dragon-birthdayEleven years ago today, I started Shur’tugal as a fourteen year old fan who couldn’t stop reading Eragon. I had no idea what I was in for. Looking back, Shur’tugal and the Inheritance Cycle (originally the Inheritance Trilogy!) shaped my life.

Fan communities were a relatively new phenomenon in 2004, with MuggleNet and the Harry Potter fan community leading the charge. Other sites existed, such as TheOneRing.net, but no books had a presence on the internet in the same way. I like to think that Shur’tugal, in part, contributed to the rise of fan communities on the web. We’ve certainly been one of the longest lasting!

I’ve had the absolute pleasure of working alongside (and now for!) the Paolini family, and am thankful to call each of them friends. I also work closely with Random House Children’s Books, the series’ publisher, who embraced the communities early on. Their support, like the Paolinis’, never waned.

We’ve seen four books over the past eleven years, with the promise of future Alagaësia books, such as the much-hyped Book 5. Christopher continues to tease the sci-fi novel he’s hard at work on, which fans can expect to be published before any additional Alagaësia books. You can bet Shur’tugal will be along for the ride, offering entertainment, news, and discussions.

So, thanks for supporting us and this incredible venture for the past eleven years. A community is nothing without its visitors, and we are eternally grateful for all of your support. We are a community with a vigor unmatched by any other – let’s help that last another decade. Here’s to an exciting future and lots of new books!

Shurtugal.com is © 2004-2014. Shurtugal.com is owned by Mike Macauley, in partnership with Lytherus.com.
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