Enid Blyton classic heads to the big screen

Enid Blyton classic heads to the big screen

Neal Street Productions is moving forward with its feature adaptation of Enid Blyton favourite, The Magic Faraway Tree.

The project has been in development for some time at Neal Street; the team is now partnering with Elysian Film Group and writer Simon Farnaby to bring the film to the big screen.

Ben Gregor will direct, with shooting set to begin in June this year.

Pippa Harris and Nicolas Brown will produce for Neal Street alongside Danny Perkins for Elysian; Perkins developed the film with Harris while he was at StudioCanal UK.

Perkins said: “Enid Blyton’s timeless story The Magic Faraway Tree has long been captivating the hearts and minds of children and adults alike, and I have no doubt that Farnaby and Gregor’s adaptation will resonate with modern audiences across the globe.

“Pippa and I are thrilled to bring this wonderful project to the big screen with the backing of Ashland Hill Media Finance.”

Harris added: “The Magic Faraway Tree was the first book I ever read as a child and it captured my imagination like no other. Blyton’s joyous stories explore the importance of family, childhood creativity and the environment, themes which are just as resonant today, if not more so. I’m thrilled to be bringing the delights of this enchanted tree to a whole new generation.”

The Magic Faraway Tree is based on the series of Blyton’s novels about Polly and Tim, and their children Beth, Joe and Fran who have to relocate to a remote part of the English countryside.

There the children discover a magical tree and its mysterious residents including Moonface, Silky, Dame Wash-a-lot and Saucepan Man.

Farnaby is one of the most in-demand screenwriters right now; his recent credits include the box office-topping Wonka; Paddington 2, The Phantom of the Open and the hit BBC comedy Ghosts, which he also co-created.

Image credit: Ceiba Tree by Lolly Knit and Creative Commons.

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