Netflix announced that Greta Gerwig has been attached to write and direct two Narnia movies almost two weeks ago. There are plenty of additional details and LOTS of opinions (see some of the links listed) but while folks have this on their minds, I just want to say something to Greta in the hope she’s listening.
Soma Games, that’s us, is the best choice in the world to be making video games for your upcoming movies.
There, I said it.
Why should a little-ol’ shop in Beautiful Downtown Newberg be trusted with a gem like Narnia?
I could talk about our handling of the Redwall IP.
I could talk about how the fans and the family appreciate how we took care of the story and the characters.
I could talk about our experience with walking, talking animals and how that gives us germane experience.
But those are supporting details. The real reason is this:
Soma Games was almost literally made for such a tale as this.
Let’s be honest, in the rarefied air of top-shelf stories, Narnia is unique in its blend of fantasy and faith. A world where Lewis’ deep Christianity is sewn into every hem and cuff but invisible to anyone unfamiliar with the code.
Lewis himself wasn’t just a typical everyday Christian, he was a prolific and hugely popular apologist who is still quoted and studied unendingly in every church, youth group, and Bible study in the West. And yet his fiction was carefully designed to reflect his deep and intellectual faith without ever saying the Jesus part out loud.
About The Space Trilogy, he said he wanted to attract the kinds of readers who would never step foot in a church but then find themselves pondering eternal things.
It’s a difficult and uncommon balance to strike.
And yet, that’s exactly the balance Soma Games has been striking since we started and we did so specifically because of both Lewis’ example and challenge, in The Weight of Glory, where he makes his oft-quoted argument about approaching the whole world of creative enterprise in a way that leaves our deep faith intact, but latent.
As I watch people respond to the recent news I hear a common question among believers – what will Netflix and Greta Gerwig do with the “faith thing” that is in the books. Will they preserve it? Will they remove it?
We can only speculate for now but I like how Into the Wardrobe put it best when he asks, “Does Greta Gerwig love Narnia?” Because if she LOVES it, then Lewis’ heart will shine through.
As for us, I am one of those Christians who says that Lewis in general, and Narnia in particular, played a fundamental and irreducible role in my coming to see Christianity as both intellectually valid and achingly beautiful at the same time. So for our part, we LOVE Narnia and have for decades. If the opportunity came, I sincerely believe that nobody could treat that world better in games than the dedicated team at Soma Games.
So Greta, call me?