Walden Media, the family-friendly and just-a-bit religious company behind The Chronicles of Narnia, has announced plans to make another, non-Narnia film based on the works of CS Lewis. But this time, it’s the turn of The Screwtape Letters.
The book takes the form of a series of letters from an experienced demon called Screwtape to his young protégé, Wormwood. Set against a background where demons, out in the world, attempt to turn people away from faith and generally cause mischief, the letters highlight examples of human weakness and chinks in people’s faith that the young demon can take advantage of in order to corrupt and weaken those he targets.
It’s a little difficult to see how it would be turned into a film with an actual plot, and there remains the problem of getting the (probably) religious target audience to go see a film about a demon, but it’s an undeniably interesting read and a humourous look at human foibles, so it could work very well, even for those who are less than committed to any religion at all.
There’s no word yet on a writer or director, let alone cast, but it’s to be produced by Fantastic Four producer Ralph Winter, along with Randy Argue and CS Lewis’ stepson Douglas Gresham.
Anyone who has read the book (and it is among my favorites of Lewis' works) can see the difficulties that the producers will have in trying to weave this into a coherent story for film. It will be fascinating to see if they can pull it off. I hope they do.