As the platform gets ready to bring back another young adult franchise, Disney+ has entered development on an Eragon series adaptation. Penned by Christopher Paolini, the 2002 novel was the first in a young adult fantasy drama series of novels entitled The Inheritance Cycle. The books centered on a young farm boy named Eragon who discovers a mysterious stone revealed to be a dragon egg and embarks on a journey to protect the dragon, which he names Saphira, from the evil King Galbatorix.
Eragon quickly became a hit upon its publication, landing as the third-best-selling children’s hardback book of 2003 and the second-best-selling paperback of 2005 and spawning a franchise of four books, which as a whole has received mixed reviews but has sold over 33.5 million copies worldwide. The novel’s success also inspired 20th Century Fox to acquire its rights and develop it into a feature-length film, which hit theaters in 2006 to widespread critical disdain and was only a modest box office success, grossing over $250 million against its $100 million production budget. Due to the poor reviews, plans for Eragon sequels were scrapped by Fox, though now it looks as though the franchise is getting another shot at the screen.
Variety has brought word that an Eragon show has entered development at Disney+. The series will be based on The Inheritance Cycle novels from Christopher Paolini, who sources report is also attached to co-write and co-showrun the adaptation. Sources further report that the studio is looking for someone to work with Paolini, as he lacks television writing experience.
Though some may be hesitant for another adaptation following the panned movie, news of the Eragon show’s development is sure to draw some positive attention for fans of the novels. By expanding it to a TV series in favor of a 100-minute movie, Paolini’s story told over the 500-page novel can properly have every element and bit of character development get its time on screen instead of racing to establish a new film franchise to compete with the Harry Potter films. Additionally, with Paolini himself attached to help usher Eragon to the screen with the Disney+ show, the likelihood for a more faithful adaptation of his novels seems very high.
The Eragon show marks the latest major novel franchise to get a TV adaptation at Disney+ following the in-production Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. Much like Eragon, the Percy Jackson show also has its source author, Rick Riordan leading the charge as creator and co-showrunner with Dan Shotz, pointing towards the streaming platform’s dedication to making up for the mistakes of prior adaptations of both novels with a more authentic approach. While audiences await further details on the series, they can revisit the Eragon movie available to stream on Disney+ now.