The Team Behind Doctor Who and the Writer of Skins Will Give The Golden Compass New Life

Illustration for article titled The Team Behind iDoctor Who /iand the Writer of iSkins/i Will Give iThe Golden Compass/i New Life

Philip Pullman’s fantasy series, His Dark Materials, has long been a favorite of readers but Hollywood’s previous attempt to bring the first book, The Golden Compass, to the big screen was a disappointment. But now the team behind Doctor Who are revisiting the material for BBC One.

Deadline reports that acclaimed writer Jack Thorne (Skins, This is England) has been hired to adapted Pullman’s novels for the BBC under the eye of producers Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner, who helped bring Doctor Who back to prominence on the channel. We’d heard that BBC wanted to turn His Dark Materials into a series before, but the addition of the creative team turns things up a notch.

His Dark Materials is the collective name of three novels: The Golden Compass (or Northern Lights in some places), The Subtle Knife, and The Amber Spyglass. They follow a young girl at the center of a fantasy mystery that spans worlds. New Line Cinema adapted the first book into a major motion picture in 2007 (which starred Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig), but it was mostly a critical and financial failure, so the franchise stalled.


“I’m delighted to welcome Jack Thorne as writer on the TV dramatization of His Dark Materials,” Philip Pullman said in a press release. “Jack is a writer of formidable energy and range, and I’ve greatly enjoyed talking to him and learning about his plans for bringing His Dark Materials to the screen. I’m certain he’ll do a superb job, and I look forward to seeing the whole project develop as he shapes the story.”


Entertainment Reporter for io9/Gizmodo

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Chick Counterfly

Fantastic news.

After the failure of the overly religious (“bang you over the head with Christian imagery and vilify magic anything that’s non-Christian fantasy and magic in a fantastic and magical world) Narnia film series, the film brought a fresh take on fantasy and magic to the cineplexes. It’s reception and box office failure was very disappointing.

It’s great to read that this book series will be revived for the screen and not have to face the wrath of the uber-religious in its new incarnation via rebirth by the BBC (as opposed to American film distribution).

If anyone thinks I’m pulling the Christian controversy out of nowhere:

‘The Golden Compass’ Spurs Controversy…

Furor Over a New Film Titled “The Golden Compass”…

Christian Groups Claim Pro-Atheist ‘Stealth Campaign’ in Nicole Kidman Fantasy Film ‘The Golden Compass’…


The Religious Controversy Surrounding Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials


‘’The Golden Compass’’ controversy…


Overzealous and fearful (mainly American) parents killed this excellent movie franchise before it even began.

It’s incredibly sad when a religious group is so fundamentally frightened that their children will be unable to make up their own minds about life, the universe, religion, and everything, just because they are exposed to a fantastic book or film adapted from a book.

The travesty of The Golden Compass film adaptation and its assassination is an incredible and very sad story.