If you’ve been hoping for a new Percy Jackson TV or movie series from Disney since Percy Jackson movie 3 is seemingly never happening, it looks like we’re closer than ever to seeing that become a reality.
Chances are you’ve probably been following the saga of the Percy Jackson adaptations for quite some time. It’s no secret that author Rick Riordan isn’t a huge fan of the movies. He’s written extensively about his relationship with the original creators and how he doesn’t support the two movies that did hit the big screen.
When Disney bought 20th Century Fox and the rights to Percy Jackson switched over to the Mouse, fans around the world got excited. Would it be possible to see a new Percy Jackson reboot, and one that would be more faithful to the books?
In November 2018, Riordan tweeted that he didn’t have any information regarding this possibility, but he did take a poll about what fans would like to see if there was a chance to have the books adapted again. Over 41,000 votes later, it was clear (with an overwhelming 93% margin) that Percy Jackson fans would love to see a new team tackle the books.
It’s been pretty quiet since then. Riordan hadn’t shared any further news and any rumors were just that — rumors. We had no significant and concrete evidence that an adaptation was moving forward.
That is, until December 10, 2019, when Riordan tweeted that fans got #DisneyAdaptPercyJackson trending without any prompting.
Thank you, guys, for getting this trending with no prompting. I have nothing to announce on this front yet, but I am in LA right now, trying hard to convince the powers-that-be that this needs to happen for you, the fans. Your enthusiasm online helps! #DisneyAdaptPercyJackson
— Rick Riordan (@camphalfblood) December 11, 2019
Surprisingly, Riordan was actually in L.A. at the time, speaking with Disney executives to convince them that it would be worth investing in a Percy Jackson adaptation. He said it’s what the fans deserve and that online enthusiasm will help convince them that this needs to happen.
It’s wonderful to hear that the author of these fantastic books is willing to give an adaptation another chance, considering how the previous two were received. Then again, if you’re going to bet on anyone, then betting on Disney is the smart choice. Percy Jackson is certainly in their wheelhouse.
The following day, Riordan said he was still in L.A. with an entire day of meetings ahead of him.
— Rick Riordan (@camphalfblood) December 12, 2019
There’s no telling what these meetings entailed, but I imagine both direction and budget were two of the main talking points. Disney would be smart to keep Riordan on deck, as he clearly knows his audience and understands what we would want from a new adaptation.
In terms of the direction, there are several avenues Disney could be looking at. Will it be live-action or animated? A TV series or a film franchise? Would it have a theatrical release or be released on Disney+ as original programming? Will they tackle the first book and see what happens, or will they attempt to adapt the first five in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series?
And what about beyond that? I would say it’s probably too soon to think that far ahead, but Disney (via Marvel) has no problem planning years ahead of time if they think they’ve got something worth their time and money.
Another day of meetings followed on December 12. In this photo Riordan is holding up a Disney+ button, which may suggest that the Percy Jackson talks concern a new TV series for Disney+.
Had some good meetings at Disney today. Way too early to know what if anything might happen, but I will keep at it! At least they knew me by name at the security gates! (zoom in on my nametag to see what I mean 😂) pic.twitter.com/BeIKS0rDhJ
— Rick Riordan (@camphalfblood) December 13, 2019
Indeed, it’s much too early to know what will happen next, but several days of meetings is certainly promising. Disney probably has plenty to think about, in terms of both the creative and business sides of the deal.
Now, it’s important to keep talking about Disney adapting Percy Jackson and hoping they’ll listen to both the author and the fans of these fantastic books.
Back in Boston. Good productive trip to LA. Now we wait for a response. The folks at Walt Disney Studios in Burbank were very welcoming and heard me out. Not sure about that one guy second from left, though. He seemed awfully, I dunno, Grumpy? 🙃 pic.twitter.com/TsUMrIP3XH
— Rick Riordan (@camphalfblood) December 16, 2019
As a long-time fan of these books, I’ll admit that I’m quite excited. I’m trying not to get my hopes up, but Disney would be the perfect home for a Percy Jackson adaptation. If they kept the kids young (the movie aged them up) and tried to be as faithful to the books as possible, there’s no doubt they’ll find an audience.
After all, the first book was published in 2005 and the final book in the third(!) Percy Jackson series is coming out in 2020. It’s obvious that these books are still wildly popular and that Riordan has taken good care of his characters and his audience.
There’s clearly more to come, both from Rick Riordan and the Rick Riordan Presents imprint, and Disney would be smart jump on a train that’s already been running steady for quite some time.