Having previously hit the big screen as a much-derided movie, Christopher Paolini’s The Inheritance Cycle is getting another chance at success with the first book Eragon being developed as a Disney+ series. According to reports in Variety, Eragon will be following in the footsteps of another young adult novel series, Percy Jackson and the Olympians, in finding a new lease of life at Disney after seeing its movie adaptation fail to please fans and the author the first time around.
As the first book in The Inheritance Cycle, Eragon was originally self-published by Paolini in 2002, and was then published for mass-market a year later. The success of the novel led to three further books being published between 2005 and 2011. The 20th Century Fox-produced movie adaptation of Eragon arrived in 2006, and despite having a cast including Jeremy Irons, Rachel Weisz, Joss Stone, Robert Carlyle and John Malkovich, the film was negatively received and only grossed $250 million from its reported $100 million budget. However, the book series has still remained popular. Having sold over 41 million copies across the four books, it was not surprising that fans have been making a move to get the first book remade to restart the franchise.
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In 2021, a hashtag of #EragonRemake started trending soon after Disney announced they were bringing a new series based on Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson books to Disney+, with fans of Paolini’s young adult novels feeling they would appeal to a similar audience and deserved another chance at success with Disney now owning the 20th Century Fox brand. While it is vaguely possible that this social media movement swayed someone to press ahead with an Eragon series, it is more likely that the wheels were already in motion somewhere behind the scenes at Disney prior to that hashtag ever appearing.
Eragon is a Classic Young Adult Fantasy Novel
With fantasy movies and TV shows being big business right now, it is not surprising that Eragon and The Inheritance Cycle is potentially being picked up by Disney to add to the Disney+ platform. The Inheritance Cycle tells the story of a farm boy named Eragon who discovers an egg that hatches into a dragon he names Saphira. Through their bond and the help of his mentor Brom, Eragon learns to be a Dragon Rider, an ancient order that had long been thought to be wiped out by the evil king Galbatorix. Eragon and Saphira set out to defeat Galbatorix and free the land of Alagaësia from his tyranny.
While Disney has a strong base of Marvel and Star Wars projects to rely on, they have recently been tapping into a number of other franchises to bolster the Disney+ platform in the coming years. Along with the Percy Jackson series, Disney is also developing a series out of The Spiderwick Chronicles, yet another young adult novel series that has previously been adapted as a poorly received movie. Although the project is currently only reported to be in the very early stages of development, if the Eragon does head into production, author Paolini is expected to join as co-writer and will no doubt act as producer on the series. Bert Salke will executive produce as part of his deal with Disney Television Studios.