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Companion to Narnia & Lewis Book Question

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  • Hugh Davis
    Has anyone compared and found just how substantive the revisions are to Paul Ford s _Companion to Narnia_. I thumbed through it at Past Watchful Dragons, but,
    Message 1 of 18 , Nov 27, 2005
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      Has anyone compared and found just how substantive the revisions are to Paul
      Ford's _Companion to Narnia_. I thumbed through it at Past Watchful Dragons,
      but, of course, there's no guide to the additions just jumping out. The
      L'engle foreward appears to be the same.

      Also, a few weeks back I saw a book in a bookstore which amounted to "Lewis'
      Influences." I seem to remember seeing a blurb for a similar one for Tolkien
      a few years back (which reprinted fantasy Tolkien might have read). This was
      a hardback with various works by the likes of Chesterton and Tolkien (maybe
      Nesbitt) which the editors either argued CSL read and was influenced by, or
      they knew from his library he had them. I've since tried to search online,
      but I've not found the right combination of search strings to locate it. Can
      anyone help?

      Thank you,
      Hugh Davis
    • David Bratman
      ... You are probably thinking of _Reading the Classics with C.S. Lewis_, edited by Thomas L. Martin (Baker Academic, 2000). It s a collection of essays by
      Message 2 of 18 , Nov 27, 2005
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        At 01:00 PM 11/27/2005 -0500, Hugh Davis wrote:
        >Also, a few weeks back I saw a book in a bookstore which amounted to "Lewis'
        >Influences." I seem to remember seeing a blurb for a similar one for Tolkien
        >a few years back (which reprinted fantasy Tolkien might have read). This was
        >a hardback with various works by the likes of Chesterton and Tolkien (maybe
        >Nesbitt) which the editors either argued CSL read and was influenced by, or
        >they knew from his library he had them. I've since tried to search online,
        >but I've not found the right combination of search strings to locate it. Can
        >anyone help?

        You are probably thinking of _Reading the Classics with C.S. Lewis_, edited
        by Thomas L. Martin (Baker Academic, 2000). It's a collection of essays by
        scholars each discussing the books Lewis read in a particular field and
        what he thought of them.

        The closest Tolkien equivalent is probably _Tales Before Tolkien_ edited by
        Douglas A. Anderson (Del Rey, 2003), an anthology of fantasy short stories
        predating The Hobbit. Some of these Tolkien read, and may have been
        influenced by; the editor's notes explain which.

        David Bratman
      • Hugh Davis
        ... Right on both (although I did think the Tolkien volume was farther back than that). Thank you, David. Hugh
        Message 3 of 18 , Nov 27, 2005
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          >From: David Bratman <dbratman@...>

          >You are probably thinking of _Reading the Classics with C.S. Lewis_, edited
          >by Thomas L. Martin (Baker Academic, 2000). It's a collection of essays by
          >scholars each discussing the books Lewis read in a particular field and
          >what he thought of them.
          >
          >The closest Tolkien equivalent is probably _Tales Before Tolkien_ edited by
          >Douglas A. Anderson (Del Rey, 2003), an anthology of fantasy short stories
          >predating The Hobbit. Some of these Tolkien read, and may have been
          >influenced by; the editor's notes explain which.
          >
          Right on both (although I did think the Tolkien volume was farther back than
          that). Thank you, David.

          Hugh
        • Mike Foster
          _Tales Before Tolkien_ is boggling good. My best student in the 2005 spring term of that Tolkien class I once taught did a great appreciation and critical
          Message 4 of 18 , Nov 27, 2005
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            _Tales Before Tolkien_ is boggling good. My best student in the 2005
            spring term of that Tolkien class I once taught did a great appreciation
            and critical review [hi, Catherine!] of it that, I hope, Mythprint will
            publish.

            Foster

            Hugh Davis wrote:

            >
            >
            >
            >>From: David Bratman <dbratman@...>
            >>
            >>
            >
            >
            >
            >>You are probably thinking of _Reading the Classics with C.S. Lewis_, edited
            >>by Thomas L. Martin (Baker Academic, 2000). It's a collection of essays by
            >>scholars each discussing the books Lewis read in a particular field and
            >>what he thought of them.
            >>
            >>The closest Tolkien equivalent is probably _Tales Before Tolkien_ edited by
            >>Douglas A. Anderson (Del Rey, 2003), an anthology of fantasy short stories
            >>predating The Hobbit. Some of these Tolkien read, and may have been
            >>influenced by; the editor's notes explain which.
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >Right on both (although I did think the Tolkien volume was farther back than
            >that). Thank you, David.
            >
            >Hugh
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
            >Yahoo! Groups Links
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • mgeff@earthlink.net
            Greetings: Newbie here would like to second Mike s recommendation of Tales Before Tolkien (Ed. Doug Anderson). I especially love the delightful Chu-Bu and
            Message 5 of 18 , Nov 28, 2005
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              Greetings:
              Newbie here would like to second Mike's recommendation of "Tales Before
              Tolkien" (Ed. Doug Anderson). I especially love the delightful "Chu-Bu and
              Sheemish" by Lord Dunsany.
              -- Marcie

              -----Original Message-----
              From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of
              Mike Foster
              Sent: Sunday, November 27, 2005 6:16 PM
              To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com; Barnett, Catherine R
              Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Companion to Narnia & Lewis Book Question


              _Tales Before Tolkien_ is boggling good. My best student in the 2005
              spring term of that Tolkien class I once taught did a great appreciation
              and critical review [hi, Catherine!] of it that, I hope, Mythprint will
              publish.

              Foster

              Hugh Davis wrote:

              >
              >
              >
              >>From: David Bratman <dbratman@...>
              >>
              >>
              >
              >
              >
              >>You are probably thinking of _Reading the Classics with C.S. Lewis_,
              edited
              >>by Thomas L. Martin (Baker Academic, 2000). It's a collection of essays
              by
              >>scholars each discussing the books Lewis read in a particular field and
              >>what he thought of them.
              >>
              >>The closest Tolkien equivalent is probably _Tales Before Tolkien_ edited
              by
              >>Douglas A. Anderson (Del Rey, 2003), an anthology of fantasy short stories
              >>predating The Hobbit. Some of these Tolkien read, and may have been
              >>influenced by; the editor's notes explain which.
              >>
              >>
              >>
              >Right on both (although I did think the Tolkien volume was farther back
              than
              >that). Thank you, David.
              >
              >Hugh
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
              >Yahoo! Groups Links
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]






              The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org



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            • Stolzi
              HI, Marcie! Diamond Proudbrook
              Message 6 of 18 , Nov 28, 2005
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                HI, Marcie!

                Diamond Proudbrook
              • Mike Foster
                This collection is enlightening and delightful, superbly edited and annotated, puissantly chosen: a fruitful anthology for students and scholars and teachers
                Message 7 of 18 , Nov 28, 2005
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                  This collection is enlightening and delightful, superbly edited and
                  annotated, puissantly chosen: a fruitful anthology for students and
                  scholars and teachers [triple redundancy = 20 points] of JRRT.

                  Marcie, we agree. Any others?

                  ~Mike

                  mgeff@... wrote:

                  >Greetings:
                  >Newbie here would like to second Mike's recommendation of "Tales Before
                  >Tolkien" (Ed. Doug Anderson). I especially love the delightful "Chu-Bu and
                  >Sheemish" by Lord Dunsany.
                  >-- Marcie
                  >
                  >-----Original Message-----
                  >From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of
                  >Mike Foster
                  >Sent: Sunday, November 27, 2005 6:16 PM
                  >To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com; Barnett, Catherine R
                  >Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Companion to Narnia & Lewis Book Question
                  >
                  >
                  >_Tales Before Tolkien_ is boggling good. My best student in the 2005
                  >spring term of that Tolkien class I once taught did a great appreciation
                  >and critical review [hi, Catherine!] of it that, I hope, Mythprint will
                  >publish.
                  >
                  >Foster
                  >
                  >Hugh Davis wrote:
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>>From: David Bratman <dbratman@...>
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>>You are probably thinking of _Reading the Classics with C.S. Lewis_,
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >edited
                  >
                  >
                  >>>by Thomas L. Martin (Baker Academic, 2000). It's a collection of essays
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >by
                  >
                  >
                  >>>scholars each discussing the books Lewis read in a particular field and
                  >>>what he thought of them.
                  >>>
                  >>>The closest Tolkien equivalent is probably _Tales Before Tolkien_ edited
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >by
                  >
                  >
                  >>>Douglas A. Anderson (Del Rey, 2003), an anthology of fantasy short stories
                  >>>predating The Hobbit. Some of these Tolkien read, and may have been
                  >>>influenced by; the editor's notes explain which.
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >>>
                  >>Right on both (although I did think the Tolkien volume was farther back
                  >>
                  >>
                  >than
                  >
                  >
                  >>that). Thank you, David.
                  >>
                  >>Hugh
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
                  >>Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >
                  >
                  >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
                  >
                  >
                  >
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                  >
                  > a.. Visit your group "mythsoc" on the web.
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                  > mythsoc-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                  >
                  > c.. Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
                  >
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                  >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  >
                  >
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                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
                  >Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >
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                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >


                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • David Bratman
                  ... I m glad you liked that story: I pushed for its inclusion. It s one of my favorite wry Dunsany stories, and we know (as the editorial headnote explains)
                  Message 8 of 18 , Nov 28, 2005
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                    At 01:20 PM 11/28/2005 -0800, Marcie wrote:
                    >Newbie here would like to second Mike's recommendation of "Tales Before
                    >Tolkien" (Ed. Doug Anderson). I especially love the delightful "Chu-Bu and
                    >Sheemish" by Lord Dunsany.

                    I'm glad you liked that story: I pushed for its inclusion. It's one of my
                    favorite wry Dunsany stories, and we know (as the editorial headnote
                    explains) that Tolkien read and remembered it.

                    What astonished me about the book was how many stories that I didn't know
                    are awesomely similar to Tolkien in feel and tone, exactly the qualities
                    that imitative post-Tolkien fantasy conspicuously lacks. I'd point in
                    particular to "The Far Islands" by John Buchan (whose similarity to "The
                    Lost Road" or "Smith of Wootton Major" is almost creepy), "The Elf Trap" by
                    Francis Stevens, and "The Woman of the Wood" by A. Merritt (a far better
                    writer, at least in this story, than his reputation would have it).

                    David Bratman
                  • Mike Foster
                    The best student in my spring JRRT class, Catherine M. Barnett, did a very good critique of _Tales Before Tolkien_. With the generosity typical of many
                    Message 9 of 18 , Nov 29, 2005
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                      The best student in my spring JRRT class, Catherine M. Barnett, did a
                      very good critique of _Tales Before Tolkien_. With the generosity
                      typical of many Tolkien scholars, at my request, Doug shared a list of
                      the stories that Tolkien certainly read, likely read, maybe read. This
                      informed the paper quite well.

                      For some reason, writing the above sparked my recall of George Sayer's
                      recollection of visiting Tolkien and finding the Professor on the floor
                      playing with his grandchildren, saying "I'm Thomas the Tank Engine.
                      Puff, puff, puff."

                      Completing the trifecta, Paul McCartney's holograph lyric of "I Want to
                      Hold Your Hand" in the British Library is written on a Thomas the Tank
                      Engine tablet page.

                      Cheers,
                      Mike

                      David Bratman wrote:

                      >At 01:20 PM 11/28/2005 -0800, Marcie wrote:
                      >
                      >
                      >>Newbie here would like to second Mike's recommendation of "Tales Before
                      >>Tolkien" (Ed. Doug Anderson). I especially love the delightful "Chu-Bu and
                      >>Sheemish" by Lord Dunsany.
                      >>
                      >>
                      >
                      >I'm glad you liked that story: I pushed for its inclusion. It's one of my
                      >favorite wry Dunsany stories, and we know (as the editorial headnote
                      >explains) that Tolkien read and remembered it.
                      >
                      >What astonished me about the book was how many stories that I didn't know
                      >are awesomely similar to Tolkien in feel and tone, exactly the qualities
                      >that imitative post-Tolkien fantasy conspicuously lacks. I'd point in
                      >particular to "The Far Islands" by John Buchan (whose similarity to "The
                      >Lost Road" or "Smith of Wootton Major" is almost creepy), "The Elf Trap" by
                      >Francis Stevens, and "The Woman of the Wood" by A. Merritt (a far better
                      >writer, at least in this story, than his reputation would have it).
                      >
                      >David Bratman
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
                      >Yahoo! Groups Links
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >


                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • Marcie Geffner
                      Hello back to you, and thanks for being the first person (I think) to tell me about MythSoc, though it took me ages to finally join the listserv. Your Narnia
                      Message 10 of 18 , Nov 29, 2005
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                        Hello back to you, and thanks for being the first person (I think) to tell
                        me about MythSoc, though it took me ages to finally join the listserv. Your
                        Narnia cartoon brought a smile to my day!
                        mg


                        _____

                        From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
                        Stolzi
                        Sent: Monday, November 28, 2005 6:56 PM
                        To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Tales Before Tolkien

                        HI, Marcie!

                        Diamond Proudbrook


                        The Mythopoeic Society website HYPERLINK
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                      • Bonnie Callahan
                        Welcome to the list, Marcie! Sorry i missed you at LosCon Your fellow TFer, Prunella
                        Message 11 of 18 , Nov 29, 2005
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                          Welcome to the list, Marcie!

                          Sorry i missed you at LosCon

                          Your fellow TFer, Prunella

                          mgeff@... wrote:

                          > Greetings:
                          > Newbie here would like to second Mike's recommendation of "Tales Before
                          > Tolkien" (Ed. Doug Anderson). I especially love the delightful "Chu-Bu and
                          > Sheemish" by Lord Dunsany.
                          > -- Marcie
                          >
                          > -----Original Message-----
                          > From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of
                          > Mike Foster
                          > Sent: Sunday, November 27, 2005 6:16 PM
                          > To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com; Barnett, Catherine R
                          > Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Companion to Narnia & Lewis Book Question
                          >
                          > _Tales Before Tolkien_ is boggling good. My best student in the 2005
                          > spring term of that Tolkien class I once taught did a great appreciation
                          > and critical review [hi, Catherine!] of it that, I hope, Mythprint will
                          > publish.
                          >
                          > Foster
                          >
                          > Hugh Davis wrote:
                          >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >>From: David Bratman <dbratman@...>
                          > >>
                          > >>
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >>You are probably thinking of _Reading the Classics with C.S. Lewis_,
                          > edited
                          > >>by Thomas L. Martin (Baker Academic, 2000). It's a collection of essays
                          > by
                          > >>scholars each discussing the books Lewis read in a particular field and
                          > >>what he thought of them.
                          > >>
                          > >>The closest Tolkien equivalent is probably _Tales Before Tolkien_ edited
                          > by
                          > >>Douglas A. Anderson (Del Rey, 2003), an anthology of fantasy short stories
                          > >>predating The Hobbit. Some of these Tolkien read, and may have been
                          > >>influenced by; the editor's notes explain which.
                          > >>
                          > >>
                          > >>
                          > >Right on both (although I did think the Tolkien volume was farther back
                          > than
                          > >that). Thank you, David.
                          > >
                          > >Hugh
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
                          > >Yahoo! Groups Links
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          >
                          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                          >
                          > The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
                          >
                          > ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                          > ----
                          > YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS
                          >
                          > a.. Visit your group "mythsoc" on the web.
                          >
                          > b.. To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                          > mythsoc-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                          >
                          > c.. Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
                          >
                          > ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                          > ----
                          >
                          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                          >
                          >
                          > The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
                          > Yahoo! Groups Links
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                        • Marcie Geffner
                          The L.A. TImes naturally runs a lot of articles about Hollywood. There’s no new information in this one about the man who owns the film rights to the Narnia
                          Message 12 of 18 , Dec 5, 2005
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                            The L.A. TImes naturally runs a lot of articles about Hollywood. There�s no
                            new information in this one about the man who owns the film rights to the
                            Narnia series, but here it is if anyone is interested in the background:
                            -- Marcie

                            In 'Narnia,' Tycoon Seeks Blockbuster With a Message
                            By Claudia Eller, Times Staff Writer

                            After coming up dry on such costly movie flops as "Around the World in 80
                            Days" and "Sahara," Hollywood's highest-rolling wildcatter is looking for
                            his first gusher.

                            And once again, Philip Anschutz is risking big.
                            The Denver-based multibillionaire, who made a fortune in oil, natural gas,
                            railroads, telecommunications and real estate, has spent $90 million � half
                            the film's $180-million budget � to produce the screen adaptation of the
                            children's classic "The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the
                            Wardrobe."

                            But whether the movie, which opens Friday, will produce the lucrative
                            family-oriented franchise that Anschutz hopes for depends on how skillfully
                            he and his partners at Walt Disney Co. have tapped the well.

                            Anschutz's independent production company, Walden Media, and Disney, which
                            cofinanced the film, are banking on religious moviegoers and secular fans
                            alike to make "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" � adapted from the
                            beloved book by British theologian and literary scholar C.S. Lewis � a giant
                            hit.

                            Such a windfall would give the 65-year-old Anschutz, whose vast assets
                            include Staples Center, the Los Angeles Kings hockey team, the San Francisco
                            Examiner and Regal Entertainment Group, the world's largest operator of
                            movie theaters, something he needs more than money: credibility as a savvy
                            investor in the movie business.

                            It could also give Disney something it lacks � a sure-fire movie series on a
                            par with the "Harry Potter" or "Lord of the Rings" franchises, which have
                            reaped billions for rival studios. Anschutz, a religious Christian who has
                            vowed to make wholesome entertainment that doesn't rely on sex, foul
                            language or violence to sell tickets, controls the rights to all seven books
                            in the Narnia series.

                            But first, the companies must pull off a delicate balancing act, luring
                            religious moviegoers to the allegorical film without turning off mainstream
                            audiences.

                            "It's a balance to try to market to the widest possible audience," said
                            Disney Studios Chairman Dick Cook. "We're trying to cast the widest net we
                            can."

                            To that end, Disney is spending mightily � an estimated $120 million to
                            market and distribute the PG-rated film worldwide on more than 8,000
                            screens.

                            Although the studio hopes to attract the same churchgoers who helped make
                            Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" a box-office juggernaut in 2004,
                            Cook said less than 5% of the film's marketing budget was earmarked to reach
                            that group.

                            Disney has hired some of the same marketing outfits that drummed up
                            grass-roots support for Gibson's film through church-based outreach
                            programs, study guides and other means, but "none of the marketing plays up
                            the biblical aspects of the story," Cook said.

                            Brent Plate, assistant professor of religion at Texas Christian University
                            in Fort Worth, said Disney was smart to take a two-pronged sales approach.

                            "It's a fine line to walk because you don't want to alienate anyone," said
                            Plate, who believes that the Narnia saga is "in no way a 'Passion' for
                            kids," as some evangelical groups have labeled the film.

                            In Lewis' books, which have sold more than 95 million copies worldwide,
                            there are many religious references, though to most children, they're hard
                            to spot. For example, Aslan the lion, a benevolent character who is
                            sacrificed and resurrected, is widely seen to represent Christ.

                            But many, including Lewis himself, have said the mythologies in "Narnia" are
                            open to various interpretations, and the story is more about universal
                            themes of good versus evil, betrayal, sacrifice and forgiveness than about
                            God.

                            In the film version of "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe," devoted fans
                            will recognize the four young British siblings who are transported through a
                            magic wardrobe to Narnia, a parallel universe inhabited by talking animals,
                            satyrs, dwarfs and an evil witch. The children discover their inner strength
                            when they lead the forces of good in a battle to save Narnia.

                            Though there is plenty of spirited swordplay to satisfy audiences that like
                            action-adventure movies, the film is true to the book's spiritual themes.
                            The children, for example, are referred to as the sons and daughters of Adam
                            and Eve.

                            "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe," in other words, has all the elements
                            � loyalty, family, redemption � that Anschutz prizes most. Those who work
                            with him say that for the press-shy entrepreneur, "Narnia" represents the
                            perfect melding of his dual missions: to make big money while subtly
                            promoting a moral agenda.

                            "It is a true combination of two motives," said David Weil, chief executive
                            of Anschutz Film Group, which owns Walden Media and its sister firm, Bristol
                            Bay Productions.

                            Anschutz declined to comment for this article, but remarks he made last year
                            at a Florida college speak volumes about what motivated him to become a
                            Hollywood player.

                            After years of complaining about the content of movies, Anschutz told the
                            students, "I decided to stop cursing the darkness � and instead do something
                            about it by getting into the film business."

                            That decision, he joked, prompted his wife to question his sanity.

                            "Phil, this is one of the nuttier things you've ever done," he recalled her
                            saying before warning him to keep his day job.

                            But as crazy as it seemed, Anschutz said, he believed there was money to be
                            made in family films. "My reasons for getting into the entertainment
                            business weren't entirely selfless," he told the students. "Hollywood as an
                            industry can at times be insular and doesn't understand the market very
                            well. I saw an opportunity in that fact."

                            His mission, as he saw it, was to "figure out a way to make goods and
                            products that people actually want to buy."

                            So far, his track record has been spotty.

                            "More of our films lost money than made money," acknowledged Weil, who was
                            Anschutz's attorney before being named head of the billionaire's film
                            company last year.

                            Anschutz's successes include the acclaimed films "Holes," "Because of
                            Winn-Dixie" and "Ray," which won Jamie Foxx a best actor Oscar for his
                            portrayal of the legendary Ray Charles. The $40-million film, which Anschutz
                            personally bankrolled, is his biggest box office hit to date with $75
                            million in U.S. ticket sales.

                            But any profits he may have seen from those films were offset by untold
                            losses from such expensive misses as last year's $110-million remake of
                            "Around the World in 80 Days," which grossed just $24 million domestically.

                            Anschutz's only other attempt to create a franchise, this year's
                            $130-million action adventure "Sahara," the first film from a series of
                            Clive Cussler novels, not only was a box office disappointment but also
                            prompted an ugly legal brawl. Cussler sued Anschutz, who had optioned all 18
                            of the novelist's books, alleging his creative rights were violated.
                            Anschutz countersued, saying the author breached their agreement by
                            bad-mouthing the movie before its release, among other things.

                            No settlement talks are underway in the case, which is scheduled for trial
                            in May. No other movies based on Cussler's novels are planned.

                            Those who know Anschutz well say his experience in the oil business, where
                            it's common to drill 20 to 30 holes before striking crude, has made him a
                            patient investor. He's considered a contrarian, meaning he likes to operate
                            counter to conventional wisdom.

                            For example, in 2000 and 2001, when the exhibition business was reeling from
                            an overbuilding spree, Anschutz bought three troubled theater circuits at
                            bargain prices. He then merged the trio of companies � creating the world's
                            largest theater chain � and took them public as Regal Entertainment Group.

                            "It's been a good investment for Phil," said Mike Campbell, CEO of Regal,
                            whose 550 theaters boast more than 6,500 screens in 40 states. Campbell
                            estimates that in any given year, Regal generates about 20%, and sometimes
                            more, of the total U.S. box office receipts.

                            Since the company went public in 2002, Campbell said, Anschutz hasn't sold a
                            single share: "I think that reflects his confidence in the business and his
                            long-term investment strategy."

                            But Anschutz's faith in his own intuition has also led him astray. Anschutz,
                            who owns five professional soccer teams, invested $20 million in a World
                            Cup-themed movie, "The Game of Their Lives," that grossed a measly $375,474.

                            Still, Anschutz has told colleagues that he remains committed to the
                            creative side of the movie business. He likes moviemaking not just for its
                            entertainment value but also for what Weil calls its ability to "educate,
                            inspire and promote literacy." (Most of Walden's movies are based on popular
                            books, and Anschutz insists that the marketing of those films include
                            educational programs that encourage children to read).

                            In that vein, Walden is launching a book imprint in partnership with a major
                            publisher. Anschutz is also considering expanding his film company into such
                            areas as television production and video games.

                            "Let's put it this way: We signed a 10-year lease on our building," said
                            Cary Granat, CEO of Walden, whose posh new headquarters in a Century City
                            high-rise boasts a 20-seat, state-of-the-art screening room.

                            "We're building Walden into a trusted family brand," Granat said. "And Phil
                            is committed to the slate we have."

                            Among its upcoming projects, most of which are budgeted at less than $30
                            million, is an $85-million adaptation of E.B. White's pig-and-spider
                            classic, "Charlotte's Web," which Walden co-financed with Paramount
                            Pictures. It is scheduled for release in June.

                            Walden and Disney are already tentatively planning a "Narnia" sequel, based
                            on Lewis' "Prince Caspian." If the first film is a hit, its director Andrew
                            Adamson and producer Mark Johnson stand ready to go into production next
                            fall on "Caspian," to be released during the 2007 holiday season.

                            On an even grander scale, Granat and Weil said they were considering
                            launching an endeavor that would compete with the major studios: a movie
                            distribution operation that would enable the company to market and release
                            its own movies.

                            "Phil Anschutz is known to be an opportunist," Weil said.

                            As Anschutz told the students in Florida, he knows he has something to
                            prove.

                            "Nothing communicates with the people who make real decisions in Hollywood,"
                            he said, "like spending your own money and showing that you can make
                            profitable films."

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                          • Hugh Davis
                            It appears I will be able to teach a semester independent study on CS Lewis next semester (I teach at an independent high school), and I would love to hear
                            Message 13 of 18 , Dec 5, 2005
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                              It appears I will be able to teach a semester independent study on CS Lewis
                              next semester (I teach at an independent high school), and I would love to
                              hear from list members who have taught courses on CS Lewis (and the rest of
                              the Inklings) about what you feel *must* be included and any other
                              recommendations you can make.

                              Thank you,

                              Hugh Davis
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