The gods are awake! Author Rick Riordan recently shared a slew of good news about the upcoming Disney+ adaptation of Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. For starters, the series has found its pilot director in James Bobin.
In a blog post, Riordan shared this about Bobin:
Our pilot director will be James Bobin, who is both a terrific person and an incredibly talented director who checks all the boxes we were hoping for in a partner. He recently directed the pilot for Mysterious Benedict Society, which I loved and found very true to the source material, and he has worked on everything from creating Borat and Ali G with Sacha Baron Cohen to Flight of the Conchords to Muppets to Dora and the Lost City of Gold (which the Riordans found an incredibly fun adaptation of our beloved Dora the Explorer cartoon from the kids’ childhood.) James knows the Percy books well. His kids are fans. His humor is wonderful. We are in good hands, demigods, and lucky to have him joining our team.
For an adaptation like The Lightning Thief, it’s vital to have true fans involved in the work. The book has a lot of nuances, and getting the vision right can feel tricky. In addition, fans have high expectations, especially considering the last adaptation didn’t go precisely as planned. Still, it’s clear for this blog that Rick Riordan is immersed in the process, which can only mean good things.
Riordan also shared more about the casting and process of the Percy Jackson show. Casting remains a work in progress, he writes. Though he doesn’t have the information yet, he also promises to share open call casting for the interested. So watch out for that if you’d like to join the world of the Olympians. Additionally, Riordan toured Industrial Light and Magic’s “Volume” stage. Disney+’s Star Wars shows such as The Mandalorian film at this location.
Though the Percy Jackson Disney+ series likely won’t film there, Riordan hopes to learn from the process of these other shows.
He notes the technology he saw was awe-inspiring. And he hopes that some of it can inform Percy Jackson’s adaptation:
If you’re not familiar with the Volume and how it works, there is a short YouTube documentary publicly available here. It is pretty incredible stuff that puts you in the middle of a 360-degree virtual environment. They even plopped us in the middle of deep space at one point and let me punch the button “enter hyperspace.” Suddenly, we were doing the Kessel Run in less than twelve parsecs. The effects are so real we were warned to be careful if we had motion sickness, and they weren’t lying.
If all goes well, Riordan hopes to see Disney+’s Percy Jackson filming in June. But that’s just his take on the timing. We can’t wait to see when and how lightning will strike this time.