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High Hopes for The Golden Compass Sequel

Author Philip Pullman spoke to Oxford Mail about the chances of The Subtle Knife appearing on screen. He said that he had spoken to The Golden Compass producers – no specific names mentioned – and denied recent rumours that a sequel was definitely off the schedule. “It is quite possible that a sequel will happen”, he told the local newspaper. “They are getting a script together and they have plans to get things going - in time all things are possible and I feel quite positive about it.”

High hopes for Pullman film sequel

Oxford author Philip Pullman is positive a sequel will be made to the controversial movie The Golden Compass.

He spoke out after film industry sources cast doubt on a movie version of The Subtle Knife being given the go-ahead.

The Golden Compass was the sixth most successful film at the UK box office last year, grossing £26m, but it took only $70m (£35.05m) in the United States, due to a boycott by some Christians.

Internationally, however, the film version of Northern Lights, the first instalment of Mr Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy, took $300m (£150.2m) and Mr Pullman says the sequel could still go ahead.

He told the Oxford Mail: "It is quite possible that a sequel will happen but, as everyone knows, the film did not do well in the box office in America and that has a large effect on people's plans. I spoke to the producers last week and they told me about the latest developments.

"They are getting a script together and they have plans to get things going - in time all things are possible and I feel quite positive about it."

Mr Pullman said he hoped there would not be too long a delay before work started on the sequel because Dakota Blue Richards, the 12-year-old star of The Golden Compass, was growing up quite quickly. He added that making a film was a very different, and far more expensive, process to writing a book and having it published.

"Making a film costs millions of dollars and the people involved have to hesitate and think hard about the best way of doing things," Mr Pullman added.

Some scenes for The Golden Compass were shot in Oxford and the film picked up an Oscar for the best visual effects.

Former Bartholomew School pupil Ben Morris, 37, and his company Frame- store, worked on the film and he collected the award for the digital effects used in the film, including giant polar bear Iorek Byrnison.

When The Golden Compass was released last year, New Line Cinema had high hopes for the trilogy as the new The Lord of the Rings, and the sequel was due to be released by the end of 2009.

Michael Gubbins, editor of Screen International, said it was unlikely the sequel would be brought out by next year in a tough box office environment featuring 'trilogy congestion'.

Prince Caspian, the second instalment of CS Lewis's Narnia tales, came out in May and the film took $56m in the United States in its first weekend. Pre-production for The Voyage of the Dawn Treader has started, with the film due out in 2010.

Since the release of The Golden Compass, New Line has merged with Warner Brothers. No-one from Entertainment, the UK distributor, was available for comment.

Oliver Odell, of Oxford city centre management company OX1, said: "We would like to see a sequel - it raises Oxford's profile."

Earlier this year, hundreds of Pullman fans turned up at Oxford town hall to hear him read from his new book, Once Upon A Time in the North, which features characters from His Dark Materials.

Comments (36) — Add Yours

that sounds good to me. glad they squashed the rumors. i was starting to get worried….

# Posted by shilshadu on 20:53, 27 July 2008

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# Posted by redbaron12190 on 1:10, 28 July 2008

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# Posted by Dark Fantasies on 1:20, 28 July 2008

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yeah all right! lets get going already and green light before dakota gets too old lol

# Posted by LoveBitesLoveBleeds on 17:13, 28 July 2008

I hope the producers are hard a work trying to get these next two movies green lighted before DBR gets too old to play Lyra.

# Posted by TowerDragon on 17:34, 28 July 2008

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This is by FAR the best news ive heard in months!!! ive been waiting to get news like this from pullman im so excited now DBR needs to be Lyra they better get on this asap so we can have this and TAS!!!!

# Posted by warbeak13 on 19:56, 28 July 2008

They better use the original cast though, or they will have a very angry mega-fan on their tails XD

I’m so happy!!!!!!!!! But it won’t be for a while yet, considering Dakota is still filming the secret of moonacre. I wanna see that too XD

# Posted by Sayuri on 21:04, 28 July 2008

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this is a nice news people, New Lines Cinema Rocks.

# Posted by Lasiru on 6:41, 29 July 2008

Very good!!We should be hopeful!!!
Waiting continues…

# Posted by Botanica on 9:09, 29 July 2008

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After the most recent article, I had lost hope that the films would be made anytime soon.
This made my day.

# Posted by Mils on 21:12, 29 July 2008

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Oh this is just awesome! I really had given up hope over this. I’m so glad it looks like it’ll be coming through. They better make it good! =D

# Posted by Miss Bear on 23:08, 29 July 2008

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This is better than the last news I heard. Hope they hit the mark a little better than they did wit The Golden Compass though.

# Posted by Boydesy on 3:58, 30 July 2008

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I dont see why they wouldnt want to make it because of the controversy,because there are so many loyal fans to the book.We all want the movie to come out,so they should stop focasing on the cristians,and listen to what the fans like us want.

# Posted by lil lyra on 3:03, 31 July 2008

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It’s just becuase it failed at the US Box Office thats it.

# Posted by TheRealNeo on 8:39, 31 July 2008

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It was time to hear such good good news…This is simply awesome!^^
Lets keep our fan fingers crossed for another while, waiting for official news…
*dances thinking of the tSK movie*

# Posted by Lyrael on 10:13, 31 July 2008

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I would think that the controversy would make more people want to see it!  How are the rentals and sales of the DVD in the US? Besides there is more to movies than just the US audience. 

After all , there are plenty of foreign films that never make it good in the US market and are still viable. 

I hope that the nuances of TSK are played up, and not special effects (except for the daemons, of course).  And I hope the studio gets the players to agree to do both films!

# Posted by vlmecc on 23:48, 31 July 2008

I’m sure this isn’t just rumours, because it’s Philip saying it. :) He wouldn’t put up all the fans’ hopes based on loose rumours. I’m sure there is some progress going on, and that’s amazing. :D

# Posted by AnneMaria on 6:49, 1 August 2008

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I am so happy to hear that.  Hope that it is way better than TGC.  hopefully lots of people will come and watch it and no tlissten to what the boy cotters will say.  Can’t wait.  :)

# Posted by missy on 23:26, 1 August 2008

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Don#‘t forget that we have no official confirmation until now.
So don’t be happy to early.

# Posted by TheRealNeo on 10:30, 2 August 2008

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I just find it interesting how bridgetothestars.net posts everything movie related in a negative slant, while hisdarkmaterials.org posts everything movie related with a positive slant.  I’m posting the same thing on their site, so it’s not like I’m biased one way or another.  It’s just interesting.

# Posted by Darth Krawlie on 6:03, 4 August 2008

bridgetothestars.net still hasn’t update his news with the new infos from Pullman.

# Posted by TheRealNeo on 10:04, 4 August 2008

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Alot of smoke blows about in Hollywood, so don’t get too excited.

The black PR run against TGC was impressive. The opposition to Monty Python’s ‘Life of Brian’ had nothing like this impact. Why invest in a film that you know will perform poorly in the home market? You invest in a film likely to be a hit everywhere instead.

However, imo the paniced studio editing did half the job too. If the film hadn’t been hacked it might have been great enough to overcome the negative buzz. The fact was it didn’t gel, not for me at least.


I don’t rate the chances of TSK attracting the funding even if the a producer(s) are trying.

# Posted by spuwdsda on 23:01, 18 August 2008

I can’t wait till it comes out
(screams with Impatience)
oh and i wonder who will act Will Parry.
(screams with Impatience again)

# Posted by ash_nim_4ever on 0:26, 27 September 2008

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The article’s suggestion that the film failed in the U.S. due to a boycott is sheer fantasy.  It failed because the film just wasn’t good enough.  There was some very minor buzz from religious groups in the U.S.  but largely people did not care.  There wasn’t enough antipathy to cause any significant financial impact on the film.

I was eager to see the film and was seriously disappointed when I did. It is just thin and flat, the characters are not even cardboard.  I will be astonished if TSK gets to any level of production.

# Posted by mcot10 on 6:28, 27 September 2008

I loved the movie even if it was a little thin, look at the Harry Potter films.  The stories are brilliant and full of adventure, and I hope that the sequel gets made sooner than later. I will be the first to buy a ticket.

# Posted by macdog13 on 1:56, 17 November 2008

i was just reading an article on Hossein Amini from Friday on comingsoon.net about a new screenplay he is writing, i read it because he was penning The Subtle Knife and in the article it said “He has The Golden Compass sequel adaptation The Subtle Knife in development at Warner Bros.”

# Posted by warbeak13 on 17:43, 21 December 2008

Why the hell would one say the movie was not successful in the States?  OK so it didn’t make as much money as LOTR, but who cares!  It was great, I loved the movie, and so did many Americans.  This crap about comparing a movie which should stand on its own merits to some arbitrary standard like LOTR (which on the whole sucked) is ridiculous.  Golden Compass made plenty of money in the States, but oh! not as much as the Homoerotic Trilogy, so therefore it was crap.  Rubbish.  It was great, it made plenty of money, make more, people like and love it.  God, Hollywood execs can be real pains in the asses.  Is this an American thing where success is defined by the following - is it the BEST???  What the hell does BEST mean anyway?  Adios.

# Posted by ryanjeanes on 20:06, 7 January 2009

Is this still happening? *prays* Oh, please please please let it still be true…

But yeah.  Does anyone know if they are still planning to make The Subtle Knife? (PLEASE PLEASE!!!) I loved the first movie, even though it wasn’t completely true to the book, and I am DYING to see TSK on screen.  I’m on the verge of writing my own script and sending it to the producers just to wake them up…

ANY NEWS??? (Besides the thing mentioned in that article “Disney Jumps Ship on Next Narnia.” I don’t think the people that wrote that know any more than we do.) Okay, I know I’m getting repetitive, and I’m sorry.  But I’m desperate for news!!!

# Posted by HDMforever on 0:21, 26 January 2009

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Dakota Blue Richards said in a recent interview that she still doesn’t know, because New Line doesn’t exist anymore, but Time Warner or another film company still might fund the film. heres the link http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/movies/a145842/dakota-blue-richards-secret-of-moonacre.html

She also said in another interview (that I don’t have the link for) that alot of people keep saying (about the film) that oh yeah we should do that and that sounds good.  But nobody actually seems to be doing anything. She is still wanting to do the film and it sounds like she’s got her fingers crossed.

Anyway, I think there is still a possibility, because Dakota signed up for a three film contract didn’t she? So if they weren’t making the others they’d have to tell her, but she doesn’t know yet.

# Posted by Sayuri on 19:11, 8 February 2009

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It’s good news to me, anyway. :D I think they’re still going to make them, and while admittedly my faith was wavering recently these ideas give me a bit of hope, lol.  I think (and hope) that it’s a yes, but I guess for right now all we can do is wait…

If any producers are reading this, MAKE THE SUBTLE KNIFE!!! PLEASE!!!  WE’RE ALL WAITING!!!

# Posted by HDMforever on 2:44, 11 February 2009

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After reading the trilogy several times, was really hoping for the sequel to hit the big screen. Despite what controversy there may or may not be, will be patiently awaiting for the second movie.

# Posted by eagle_eye on 1:40, 20 February 2009

I hate to admit it - but am addicted to this series and have been craving the sequel like others I think! But I wanted to pass on that I purchased the (3) seprate audio book CDs and listen to them on long trips. Never get tired of listening! Brilliant writing. I highly recommend it. So, in the mean time, I will be here in California listening but hoping to see the sequel(s) one day!

# Posted by nevinaustin on 0:40, 1 March 2009

I didn’t much care for the Harry Potter movies. I have read the first 3 books and they were much better than the movie’s so it would not have been much of a disapointment if they discontinued that, I wish they would have done that instead of what their current choice is, to eliminate any creativity in the world starting first by taking away a movie series that would have been so great and that is just the start of it. It is getting worse religion pushers are getting worse and infesting itself in hollywood soon we will all be forced to go to church and worship something that not all may believe in. Is that fair…really?. I do not understand why they even bothered making the 1st Philip Pullman based movie (The Golden Compass) if they were not going to continue by “pussing out” because they cannot stand up for themselves, they just bent over and took it. I have read all of the Philip Pullman books and they are a great read and I would have loved to see more movies, but of course “someone” (being the christians) always have to have a problem, why can they not just look at it as a great movie with adventure, love, friendship and not as a movie all about the hate of god? The message that they claim was so strong in the movie was not I had no clue there was any anti-god messages until i looked on the internet at all of the crazy people obbsessing over something so stupid they look into everything as some kind of hit at god, no one would have known or thought anything less of god by watching the movie for what it is and that is a good movie. It is dispointing to know that some people have are still overly god crazy and must ruin everything for everyone else. The “god” community finds a need to take everything away that is interesting and daring because it is not what they see fit. If we were to listen to all of that then we would still be writing letters in the mail and sending them through the pony express and there would be no internet or creativity or much of anything. My point is that if you were to watch it for what it was, a movie, and not add anyone’s own miss guided interpretation of it as anti-christian then it would be what it was, just a simple awesome action packed movie for all ages. I really hope they reconsider and make the sequel. I must also add that I am in no way an atheist or whatever it is that they claim this movie is trying to revert them to. I do believe in god and this movie in no way changed my view I am not a satan whorshipper. You can believe in god and still watch this movie because that is all it is… A MOVIE!

# Posted by Kilo on 1:38, 12 May 2009

I forgot to add why is there no complaints or “freak outs” about TWILIGHT they are advertising that to the younger generation much more than the golden compass was I cannot go anywhere without seeing something about that movie. It is far worse they have clearly hinted at killing and there is “sin” all over that movie a young couple that is not married and they are attached to eachothers faces the whole time. oh and no one is going to church in that movie they’d burn alive it also shows that to their favorite characters cross’s are BAD. I guess I just do not understand why they chose to single out that one movie and ruin any chance of more sequels.

# Posted by Kilo on 1:39, 12 May 2009

The people who stomped all over this movie must not truly have faith in their god if they think that one movie is going to corrupt everything.

# Posted by Kilo on 1:41, 12 May 2009

Just not happ’nin’ is it mate?

# Posted by haleyeah on 1:30, 18 March 2011


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