With an anime feature film out of Studio Ghibli previously, it looks like Ursula K. Le Guin’s Earthsea novels are going to get another shot. According to Deadline, studio A24 and producer Jennifer Fox are developing the books for a TV series with the studio financing it and looking to shop it to various networks. Fox acquired the rights after Le Guin’s death but had been given her blessing to Fox to pursue it.
“Ursula Le Guin is a literary legend with a huge fan base and her work has been translated into practically every written language on the globe,” said Fox. “She is second only to Tolkien in influence in this genre, and before she died last year, she agreed to put her most beloved work in my hands. This project is, therefore, a sacred trust and priority for me as well as an opportunity to create an iconic piece of American culture.”
The anime feature film was directed by Goro Miyazaki based on the screenplay he wrote with Keiko Niwa based on the novel by Ursula K. Le Guin, Akihiko Yamashita served as the character designer.
The Japanese cast includes Aoi Teshima as Therru, Bunta Sugawara as Ged, Junichi Okada as Prince Arren, Jun Fubuki as Tenar, Kaoru Kobayashi as The King, Mitsuko Baisho as Vendor, Takashi Naito as Hazia dealer, Teruyuki Kagawa as Usagi, Yui Natsukawa as The Queen, and Yuko Tanaka as Witch Kumo.
The English cast includes Blaire Restaneo as Therru, Matt Levin as Arren, and Timothy Dalton as Sparrowhawk.
Plot Concept: Something bizarre has come over the land. The kingdom is deteriorating. People are beginning to act strange… What’s even more strange is that people are beginning to see dragons, which shouldn’t enter the world of humans. Due to all these bizarre events, Ged, a wandering wizard, is investigating the cause. During his journey, he meets Prince Arren, a young distraught teenage boy. While Arren may look like a shy young teen, he has a severe dark side, which grants him strength, hatred, ruthlessness and has no mercy, especially when it comes to protecting Teru. For the witch Kumo this is a perfect opportunity. She can use the boy’s “fears” against the very one who would help him, Ged.