I love the Percy Jackson books, they’re fantastic, but the film adaption deserves a second go. The Lightning Thief (2010) really isn’t great, but The Sea of Monsters (2013) is much better (at least they got Annabeth’s hair right).
The problem is quite simple, they bottled it. Instead of choosing twelve-year-old actors, and trusting in their ability and the material, the directors chose adults. Instead of building the world that the readers knew, they changed the plot of the first film so substantially, it’s barely recognisable. With the second movie, there is a lot more reliance on the book, which really helps, but they cant fix the mess of the first film, and they never regained the fandom.
Designating the books to a third rate series isn’t fair on the fans, or the right call
Since I started this article, a series has been announced on Disney +, so you might imagine my gripe no longer exists. But honestly, I’m still disappointed. The books are perfectly written for film adaption, films have a longer lifespan, and marketing the series on Disney will lead to it inevitably being seen as children’s series, while the books (especially the Heroes of Olympus) contain some really, really dark themes. They have all the attributes that made Harry Potter, well, Harry Potter. Designating the books to a third rate series isn’t fair on the fans, or the right call. The franchise could lead to 10 blockbuster films on the back of the two main series alone, before we even get started on Apollo, Magnus Chase, and all Riordan’s other books.
I honestly believe the ‘Percy Jackson’ franchise has the legs to be the next Harry Potter, but unfortunately, I don’t think we’ll ever know. Hollywood very rarely forks out for big second chances…
Last modified: 19th May 2020