Percy Jackson: 10 Ways The Disney+ Show Is Righting The Wrongs Of The Past Films
The Percy Jackson movies left a lot to be desired, both from the perspective of adapting the books themselves and from the view of the quality of the productions. Luckily, the Disney+ series is already making several shifts to ensure that the mistakes that were made in the past would not be made again.
Fans are thrilled to see that the novels based on Greek mythology would be getting a new small-screen iteration to explore. The fantasy piece has the potential to evolve into a huge franchise, and these early indicators do suggest that there are larger strategies in place to ensure the show doesn't miss as the films did.SCREENRANT VIDEO OF THE DAY
Involving The Author
Rick Riordan wasn't particularly involved in the first adaptation of Percy Jackson. That's a ridiculous choice considering the mind behind the series knows more about it than anyone else. He's written these characters for years and has crafted an interconnected universe on the page that fans love.
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The new Disney+ series has Riordan operating as a writer and producer on the show, where he can give his much-needed advice. That's such a crucial way to avoid the problems of the past, as even the author himself seems to have been disappointed by the previous movies.
The Casting Process
The casting process has already been incredibly interesting for the series. The casting was relatively well-received for the movies, however, the show has managed to go far further, casting actors that feel authentic in the roles that they have been given.
The kids themselves will be spoken about further, but when looking at the range of adults there's a perfect dynamic being set up here with veteran actors mentoring these younger stars. What's more, there are Greek members of the cast like Jason Mantzoukas which is so vital for cultural representation.
The Correct Ages
While the younger actors might be talented and charismatic, there's an element to their casting that cannot be overlooked. Their age. They have been chosen at around the same age that Percy was in the books. In comparison, the movies cast far older than they should have done.
Their adventures are going to feel more real because they reflect the ages of the characters on the page. What's more, the long-term prophecy will genuinely work, because the actors will be aging in real-time, alongside the narratives of the fantasy series. It's a similar approach to Harry Potter.
Proper Camp Half-Blood
Camp Half-Blood is a really important location on the page. The way the children of the gods have separated plays into this location and the larger narrative and this is the place that Percy himself calls home. He is trained from a young age at Camp Half-Blood explaining his incredible gifts.
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The movies didn't bother to show nearly enough of the Camp and although the sequel went a little further, it didn't quite capture the feel of the books. It's so important as the series progresses, but it's obvious that it's going to play a much larger role in the series itself, with a few teases for what fans could expect.
When the first Percy Jackson film was crafted it was clear that there were no long-term plans in place for how the narrative would develop. The second movie combined a few different narratives because of that lack of structure, and ultimately the series failed with a whimper.
The Disney+ show is already planning for the long-term. From the casting choices to the Camp Half-Blood inclusion and how Rick Riordan is planning the series, it's obvious that each series is going to be based on a single book, allowing for the full story to be told.
Not Rushing The Story
Part of the benefit of long-term planning is being able to pace the story to a more appropriate level. With two films covering multiple books, some of the biggest story beats from the novels were completely rushed, in favor of moments that ultimately didn't develop the characters well enough.
The great thing about adapting the saga into a TV series is that there's so much more room to be able to tell that story. Each episode can develop at its own pace and as previously stated, a book can get up to ten hours to be delved into, rather than a smaller film.
Importance Of The Supporting Characters
The supporting characters in the original movies were overlooked. The gods themselves got some play, but the larger range of Olympians were largely ignored, despite how important they are down the line. The same can be said for Percy's peers at Camp Half-Blood, some of which were not included at all.
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Important arcs that take place later in the novels, wouldn't have had the same impact if these supporting characters weren't given time to be developed upon. With the casting in place and the inclusion of other students at the camp from season 1, it's clear that no major beats will be missed when it comes to the world outside of Percy's individual story.
The timing of the project could not be better. The fantasy genre is now on the rise, but there isn't anything in the YA adult realm that could rival a Percy Jackson series. Fans of the books already know that the narratives of the likes of the Marvel Universe with Thor, also help to set the stage here.
Mythology is now back in a big way, but there is a gap regarding modernizing Greek legends. Percy Jackson is arriving at such a great time and should hit audiences in a way that the original movies simply didn't because of the time of release. It missed the mark the first time, but the era of cinema right now would benefit from the release of this show.
The visual effects of the first Percy Jackson movies had been a little bit rough. The era wasn't right for what was needed as the technology was still limited. What's more, there was a rush to get things completed for the release of the movie. Long-term planning on the series can avoid that crunch.
The technology available now, alongside the kind of budget that the show would be looking at, should surely result in visual effects that live up to what fans of the books have been hoping for. It's now much easier to bring this world to life in a more realistic manner.
All The Fanfare
There has already been more hype around the Percy Jackson series than there ever was for the movies. The change in social media, the inclusion of Riordan as the show's biggest representative, and the fact that it's part of Disney+ is all helping to bring the scale of the series up further.
With so many more readers intrigued by this world and even more books to get stuck into, there's a great amount of fanfare surrounding the show that should bring popularity that encourages more risks to be taken with the adaptation. This could be Percy Jackson's moment to truly hit the mainstream on a new level.
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Politics graduate, freelance writer and all around film geek. If George isn't lecturing someone on the history of the MCU, he's probably ranting about the political consequences of Boris Johnson's latest hairstyle.More From George Chrysostomou