Hollywood has been all about epics, and there’s no story in all of recorded more epic than the ancient Greek epic poem by Homer, The Odyssey. Centuries later, that story will now be getting fully retold on the big screen.
Francis Lawrence and Peter Craig, the director and the writer of the last two films in the Hunger Games franchise, will direct and write an adaptation of the story to be produced by Nina Jacobson and released via Lionsgate, Deadline reported Wednesday. Lionsgate has put this film on the fast track as soon as Lawrence is finished with promotion for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2.
The Odyssey has been adapted countless times in cinema, TV and other literature, everything from Big Fish, O Brother Where Art Thou?, and a segment on The Simpsons. But with the exception of a 1997 TV series, the Odyssey itself has never been directly adapted. The story is how the Greek war hero Odysseus fought to find his way home to Ithaca after the battle of Troy, encountering sirens, monsters, gods and the wrath of nature along the way, only to arrive at home and find his family has presumed him dead.
Adapting such a sprawling story could be a remarkably difficult undertaking, especially when the sword and sandal epic has been in decline of late, but it could be an opportunity for an extended franchise of films as well.