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  • [Idea] Redwall Franchise

    I have recently been revisiting my old bookshelf from when I was a kid and I came across my old Redwall books. I forgot how evocative and charming this series is for young readers! If you're not familiar with Redwall, the best way to describe it is a mix of Arthurian Romance, Watership Down, and Narnia with an almost "Game of Thrones for kids" type atmosphere. All of the characters are common farm animals (badgers, mice, rats, moles, etc.) but are written with compelling characterization and engaging personalities. The series works really well on many levels. It takes itself very seriously--even though the characters are cute animals--giving the stories an almost mythic charm. The story-telling is top-notch and the action is exciting.

    The reason I bring it up is because I think Redwall would be a perfect new property for Disney to acquire and develop. It particularly appeals to the young boys market, which is an area which needs attention, and would give them a worthy fantasy franchise to coincide with their sci-fi properties of Marvel and Lucasfilm. And of course, the franchise would be stunning to behold if ever realized in a theme park. Think a mix between A Bugs Land and Fantasyland with exciting attractions and an evocative epic fantasy atmosphere viewed from the scale of a common mouse. The possibilities are great. Furthermore, I think Disney Animation could have a field day with the franchise with Lasseter at the helm. And of course, the marketing opportunities would be vast and continual, with a wide range of characters and stories to continue to push new merchandise into the shops.

    The concept of Redwall itself screams Disney: Talking animals who are also brave and noble warriors, high adventure, fantastic villains, a world which is both cute and marketable while at the same time being serious, exciting, and full of danger and wonder.

    If anyone remembers this series, feel free to chime in. If you haven't heard of Redwall, check it out, it's enjoyable and exciting no matter how old you are.

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    "Fairy tales, then, are not responsible for producing in children fear, or any of the shapes of fear; fairy tales do not give the child the idea of the evil or the ugly; that is in the child already, because it is in the world already. Fairy tales do not give the child his first idea of bogey. What fairy tales give the child is his first clear idea of the possible defeat of bogey."
    -
    G.K. Chesterton

  • #2
    Re: Redwall Franchise

    If I remember correctly, Redwall did have their own animated show on PBS.
    Redwall (TV series) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    I loved this show as well as the books, so it'd be great if Disney put their own twist on it!

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    • #3
      Re: Redwall Franchise

      I read the Redwall books many many years ago and enjoyed them. They have been around for at least two decades, so I'm not sure why Disney has not picked up on them. I do agree that they combine Game of Thrones with Fantasyland (kind of like Robin Hood), but that genre may not appeal to all audiences (and the books, with the violence and "wars" are not overly family friendly). I like the idea, and I think it may be able to produce a quality themed land, but the books are not as popular (like Harry Potter) so it would be difficult to gauge how successful the land would be since the books sales are not stellar.

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      • #4
        Re: Redwall Franchise

        Originally posted by notlemc View Post
        I read the Redwall books many many years ago and enjoyed them. They have been around for at least two decades, so I'm not sure why Disney has not picked up on them. I do agree that they combine Game of Thrones with Fantasyland (kind of like Robin Hood), but that genre may not appeal to all audiences (and the books, with the violence and "wars" are not overly family friendly). I like the idea, and I think it may be able to produce a quality themed land, but the books are not as popular (like Harry Potter) so it would be difficult to gauge how successful the land would be since the books sales are not stellar.
        Yes, I agree that the books have waned in popularity in the last decade though they still have some very loyal fans (myself included). Ideally, this would be a franchise that Disney Animation would re-boot and put their own spin on, with the hope that it would introduce new generations to the world of Redwall Abbey. I think the fact that the series has waned in popularity may actually serve as a positive to Disney, as it will have more freedom to put a Disney spin on the franchise.

        The books do become rather violent, especially the later ones, so I could see this as being a potential problem though Disney has not shied away from violence in the past.

        I also remember the PBS series. You could watch the whole cartoon series on youtube. Fantastic TV series for its time. I'd really love to see what Disney Animation and Imagineering could do with a property like Redwall. I think it may even harken back to classic Disney, with it's basis in Epic Romance and fairy tales. It would bring Disney into the next generation; honoring the tradition of the epic fantasy while at the same time presenting a revisionist and fresh take on the genre as well.
        "Fairy tales, then, are not responsible for producing in children fear, or any of the shapes of fear; fairy tales do not give the child the idea of the evil or the ugly; that is in the child already, because it is in the world already. Fairy tales do not give the child his first idea of bogey. What fairy tales give the child is his first clear idea of the possible defeat of bogey."
        -
        G.K. Chesterton

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        • #5
          Re: Redwall Franchise

          Oh I'd LOVE to see Disney do Redwall. Those books are magical and full of wisdom for children. I haven't thought of them in years.

          I can't believe Disney hasn't looked at them as a possible movie, it would be interesting to know what reasoning was behind not doing it or, if possibly, the author didn't want his creations to be 'Disneyfied'.
          "Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain.​"

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