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Greta Gerwig Has Been Working on ‘Narnia’ For A Lot Longer Than We Thought

Greta Gerwig Has Been Working on ‘Narnia’ For A Lot Longer Than We Thought

Greta Gerwig is taking her time to get her upcoming Narnia adaptations right.

It turns out the award-winning director, who has been tapped to adapt two books from C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia series for Netflix, has been working on the project for a long time already. She told TIME that she wrote a draft of the script before she ever stepped onto the set of Barbie. 

“Knowing that I’d laid the groundwork for Narnia and wanted to return to it — that’s probably something I set up for myself psychologically,” she said.

Gerwig took a break from Narnia to focus on Barbieand that break certainly paid off — but after the Oscars, the director said she’ll get back to work on Narnia. She’s been studying C.S. Lewis’ work closely (both the children’s series and his other fiction works) to better understand the world Lewis created.

“It’s connected to the folklore and fairy stories of England, but it’s a combination of different traditions,” Gerwig said. “As a child, you accept the whole thing — that you’re in this land of Narnia, there’s fauns, and then Father Christmas shows up. It doesn’t even occur to you that it’s not schematic. I’m interested in embracing the paradox of the worlds that Lewis created, because that’s what’s so compelling about them.”

Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s CEO, said that when they first began talking to Gerwig about adapting the series, she already had a clear vision that was “rooted in faith” like Lewis’ original material.

“It won’t be counter to how the audience may have imagined those worlds, but it will be bigger and bolder than they thought,” he said.

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