Disney taking another shot at Chronicles of Prydain, after 1980s failure of Black Cauldron

It’s been more than three decades since Disney adapted the fantasy series Chronicles of Prydain, and though the first effort didn’t turn out very well, the Mouse House is giving it another shot.

Variety reports the studio has acquired the rights to the five-novel series, written by  Lloyd Alexander. Published from 1964 to 1968, the saga is based on Welsh mythology and follows protagonist Taran from youth to maturity as he evolves from a pig farmer to would-be hero. The adventure is set in the magical land of Prydain, which “resembles ancient Wales and is engaged in a series of battles with Annuvin, the Land of Death.”

The books in the Chronicles of Prydain series include The Book of Three, The Black Cauldron, The Castle Llyr, Taran Wanderer and The High King. The last installment was a decorated young adult work, winning the John Newbery Medal. In the search for the next great fantasy epic, this makes as much sense as anything else out there.

As for Disney’s previous effort? The studio turned The Black Cauldron into an animated film back in 1985, which made back less than half of its $44 million budget and is largely regarded as a forgettable movie with some groundbreaking technical work (it marked Disney’s first efforts to mesh computer-generated graphics with animation). The darker project also led the company to pivot creative directions, doubling down on kid-friendly fare like The Little Mermaid.

The report of the deal doesn’t note if Disney is eyeing a live-action, or animated, take on Prydian — though live action seems more likely for something of this scope.

Are you psyched to see the series get a new lease on life?

(Via Variety, A.V. Club)

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