The Magician’s Elephant, written by Kate DiCamillo, will soon be adapted for the big screen. An animated movie adaptation of the novel has been ordered by Netflix and is scheduled for release this spring.
With almost 25 books published, including Because of Winn-Dixie, The Tiger Rising, The Tale of Despereaux, and Flora & Ulysses, DiCamillo is best renowned for her work in children’s fiction. Both Flora & Ulysses and The Tale of Despereaux won DiCamillo the Newbery Medal for children’s literature. After the four previously mentioned books, The Magician’s Elephant is slated to become DiCamillo’s fifth big-screen adaptation. Along with Wendy Rogers serving as the director and Julia Pistor serving as the producer, screenwriter Martin Hynes will adapt the script. With Pistor Production and Animal Logic, Netflix will handle production through its subsidiary Netflix Animation. Additionally, Netflix is in charge of exclusive distribution.
Let’s now examine all we know about The Magician’s Elephant on Netflix. What kind of story can we anticipate, and how closely will it resemble the book? Who is among the cast lined up? When will the movie be released on Netflix? Will it eventually be adapted into a major children’s movie?
The Magician’s Elephant: The Plot
DiCamillo’s novel follows Peter, a ten-year-old boy looking for his lost sister, in a still from the book Candlewick Press. A fortune teller tells him that an elephant will lead the way. After that, a local magician summons an elephant. Peter must bring together a wide cast of personalities along the way to both save the elephant and his sister. Togetherness, the value of family, and how hope can motivate people to do great things are some of the themes that DiCamillo addresses. A number of honours were bestowed upon the book, including an ALSC Notable Children’s Book Award in 2010.
The plot of the movie appears to follow the book very closely based on what we know about it. Below is a summary of the story.
“The only thing on Peter’s mind when he encounters a fortune teller in the market square while looking for his long-lost sister Adele is whether or not she is still alive. Peter embarks on a terrifying trip to perform three seemingly impossible tasks that will change the landscape of his town forever and lead him on the adventure of a lifetime after learning the solution—that he must discover a mystery elephant and the magician who can summon it.”
What first attracted the film’s director, Wendy Rogers, she stated, “I was completely engrossed in the setting and the characters when I first read the novel, and Peter’s story firmly rooted itself in my heart. This movie’s themes, which include the ability to question “what if? “, the strength of optimism, and the conviction that anything is possible, are more relevant than ever.”
Although this is the first time DiCamillo’s narrative has been adapted for the big screen, it has already been done several times. Nancy Harris’ stage adaption ran from October 2021 through January 2022. The Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon, arguably the world’s theatre capital, hosted the production’s global debut. Just like with the book, spectators and critics lauded the theatrical adaptation.
As the release date draws nearer, more details about the plot should be forthcoming.
The Magician’s Elephant: The Cast
A stellar cast has been assembled by Netflix to play the parts we adored in the novel. Actor Noah Jupe portrays Peter, the little boy who sets out to find his sister, in the movie A Quiet Place. Benedict Wong, a member of the MCU, plays the magician who summons the elephant Peter needs to locate his sister. Pixie Davies, an English actress best recognised for her breakthrough role in Disney’s Mary Poppins Returns, portrays Peter’s sister Adele.
The remaining cast members are Brian Tyree Henry from Atlanta, Sian Clifford from Fleabag, Natasia Demetriou from What We Do in the Shadows, Dawn French from England, Aasif Mandvi from Evil, Mandy Patinkin from Homeland, Miranda Richardson from England, Lorraine Toussaint from Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, and legendary voice actress Cree Summer. None of these stars are currently associated with any roles.
In the upcoming weeks and months, we may anticipate additional casting announcements as well as the affirmation of existing roles.
On March 17, Netflix will release The Magician’s Elephant. But before the novel was even published, a feature film based on it was already in development. Prior to the book’s September publication, 20th Century Fox bought the movie rights to The Magician’s Elephant in August 2009. However, the movie remained in the development stage for more than ten years before producer Julia Pistor decided to pitch it to Netflix in December 2020.
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