Disney's Artemis Fowl adaptation to be directed by Kenneth Branagh

An adaptation of Eoin Colfer's "Artemis Fowl" YA fantasy series has been in the works for close to fifteen years, but after many false starts and an extended period in development hell, the adaptation may have finally found new life. The Tracking Board reports that Walt Disney Pictures and The Weinstein Company have secured the talents of Kenneth Branagh to develop and direct the property.

Development of ARTEMIS FOWL is still in the early stages with Irish playwright Conor McPherson currently in talks to write the script, but getting Kenneth Branagh on board will surely give this project the kick in the butt it needs to get going. Colfer's "Artemis Fowl" series has spanned eight books and several graphic novel adaptations but I'm afraid that I'm completely unfamiliar with what the series is all about. Assuming you're in the same boat as me, shall we find out together?

The fantasy series follows the brilliant and cunning 12-year-old eponymous criminal mastermind Artemis Fowl II, whose cunning plot to extort gold from the secret Fairy People puts him directly in the cross-hairs of some of the most dangerous creatures on earth. Over the series, Fowl becomes a sort of anti-hero rather than a full-fledged villain, often having to work together with the fairies to stop a slew of treacherous megalomaniacs.

Well that certainly sounds...interesting, but will the series' adaptation to film prove to be a "Harry Potter" or an "Eragon" for Disney and TWC? With Branagh's CINDERELLA making some serious money for Disney, I can all too well imagine their desire to keep the filmmaker in the Disney family. Kenneth Branagh has also been in talks to direct MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS for Fox.



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