A Slice of Divergent Fandom, as seen through Twitter

MaeAAMThe Divergent series may not have the dedicated fandom that Harry Potter and Hunger Games had—otherwise the movies would have done better and this post would not even be necessary. But there is clearly a core group of fans that are most distressed at the news that the final installment (Ascendant) will most likely appear as a TV movie rather than in the cinema. Several hashtags (#AscendantOnTheBigScreenm #MakeAscendantAMovie, #MakeAsendantMovie) have cropped up on Twitter. I was surprised by a few things as I read through them and so, like a good Erudite, I decided to do a little very informal analysis.

flyingallegiant-640x345Of the 126 tweets I read and classified, slightly more than half (70) were in English. The rest were all in other languages, the majority (35) Spanish.  Other languages I recognized were Portuguese, Italian and French. I knew Divergent had a strong international audience but I was surprised by how strong an international voice turned up on Twitter. I guess that is why Ms. Roth’s jetsonsnext book (Carve the Mark) will be released in 33 languages when it debuts.  It also reaffirms my opinion that lots of the movie decisions (e.g. replacing the rickety old planes with George Jetson-style sprockets) were made based how they would play in international markets, or how they would fly (pardon the pun) in future theme park attractions.   [Read more…]

Ascendant (aka Allegiant Part Two) Movie cancelled; may be TV movie instead.

Divergent-Allegiant-Movie-PosterThis news broke a couple of days ago on Variety, and has not been confirmed by Lionsgate; but it also has not been denied, so I guess it is true. Allegiant-the-movie (or rather, Allegiant-the-movie-somewhat-loosely-inspired-by Veronica Roth’s-Allegiant-the-novel) failed to scale the high wall of acceptable reviews and–more importantly, no doubt–box office proceeds.  Lionsgate has decided not to proceed with Ascendant-the-movie, but rather will tie up the franchise with a TV movie, that will hopefully launch a new TV series with different characters set in Roth’s dystopia.

divergent_series_ascendantAs the resident Divergent-junkie and Veronica Roth fangirl, I see the news as a mixed bag.  It is crystal-clear that Lionsgate overplayed its hand in thinking they could squeeze four films out of this trilogy, especially when the book they chose to “split,” Allegiant, itself disappointed so many fans. As it was, the Insurgent and Allegiant movies deviated so much from the books that inspired them that I don’t think I’ll miss the fourth movie on the big screen.  There’s also the fact that they basically used up all their source material in the third movie, unless they planned to spend 2 hours killing Tris and scattering her ashes from the Hancock Tower. Link to the Mugglenet academia podcast for more details on this. [Read more…]

See You at the Potter Party in Staunton for the ‘Cursed Child’ Script Release!

QCPPButterbeer, magic cats and birthday cake for Harry— what better way to celebrate the midnight publication of the book of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child?  Free events all day, all ages welcome!

I’m on deck for a series of “Magic and the Mind” talks on Harry Potter and psychology. If you are in Central Virginia, please join us beginning at 12 PM in downtown Staunton!

Watch this space (Updated 7/20/2016!!)  for details, or check out the Facebook page.

 

 

New ‘Newt Scamander’ Trailer: JKR Introduction on What Her Works Are Primarily About — the Other’ed

From ChrisC:

“My heroes are always people who feel set apart, stigmatized or ‘othered.’ That’s at the heart of most of what I write”. – J.K. Rowling.

A new “Fantastic Beasts” trailer has been released, titled “A New Hero”.

What’s notable is that it features Ms. Rowling herself giving “just a smidge” of background info on Newt Scamander. As an extra bonus, the trailer a snippet of “meet cute” between Newt and Tina.

Enjoy!

MuggleNet Academia: Can You Learn How to Write Like Rowling? Oh, Yeah!

MuggleNet’s Keith Hawk and I talk with C. S. Plocher of WriteLikeRowling.com and Christine Frazier of BetterNovelProject.com about the magic of J. K. Rowling’s artistry and the ways wannabe writers can imitate her by borrowing tools she uses (and others they’d best avoid). I love the way these ladies think and cannot urge you strongly enough to check out the brilliant things they’ve written about Harry Potter, Twilight, The Hunger Games, and other fiction at their sites.

But first check out this roller coaster ride of a contrarian convention conversation as we discuss influence, allusion, literary alchemy, ring composition, whether Rowling’s hero’s journey is formulaic, Christian symbolism, dialogue, planning vs flying by the seat of your pants, and much more. A Top Ten MNet academia episode for sure!