Thursday, September 10, 2015

Artemis Fowl movie!?

So, Sir Kenneth Branagh, the guy who acts as Gilderoy Lockhart in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is a director. He is collaborating with Disney… to make an Artemis Fowl movie.
[I would insert a gif here if my computer wasn't being such a jerk about it]
Eoin Colfer (the author of the Artemis Fowl series), has delivered his approval of this, and I'm as excited as all heck. Some people are rather dubious, due to the fact that DISNEY is the company working on this. Personally, I don't have much against Disney, though I might be more at ease about this whole thing if, say, Warner Bros. was the one working on the thing.
Now, while I am not too concerned about Disney working on the Artermis Fowl movies, there are a few things I am concerned about. For now, I'm just going to be talking about my NUMBER ONE CONCERN.
The casting and writing of Artemis Fowl himself.
Artemis Fowl is an interesting character. He starts off as a sort of villain. No, he DOES start out as the villain. A pre-teen villain, an incredibly dry and snarky villain, a remarkably egotistical villain, an absolutely BRILLIANT villain, but nonetheless a villain we find ourselves rooting for. Sure, we feel sorry for Holly Short and her predicament (and I personally hated Artemis for putting her through emotional torture). But all the same, we admire and often support Artemis' charismatic attitude and brilliant plots.
Now, yes, Artemis becomes more of a good guy/anti-hero as the series goes on, and I may talk more about that and other later-in-the-series events in a different post. In this post though, I'm just going to be talking about the first book. Because I am legitimately concerned about how Artemis is handled on screen.
Artemis scares people. They're expecting a little kid, but no, they meet a cold and condescending young man. One who is a prodigy, knows that he is a prodigy, and is not averse to rubbing people's faces in it. He never comes off as an annoying kid who pretentiously flaunting his intelligence. He is pretty scary. [I would be giving example quotes from the book(s), but I appear to have misplaced them, so that's a problem].
That is very important! In order for Artemis to not come of as an incredibly annoying and pretentious, this requires effort from both the actor and the screenwriter. Artemis needs to act enough like an cold and villainous adult that Holly Short will have absolutely no qualms delivering a hard punch to his face. Yes. That happens in the book. It's a good moment because Artemis got what he deserved.
Not only that, Artemis needs to carry an authority about him. He orders his bodyguard Butler, and Butler's sister Juliet, like a professional. He is their employer after all. Again, Artemis cannot appear as a pretentious kid ordering older people around. He has legitimate authority.
There are of course times when Artemis acts like something more than a villain or employer. He is pretty much one of those villains that you meticulously analyze…

…like Loki. Only since the story is actually ABOUT the villain and not from the POV of the people facing the villain, we have a LOT more insight into what is going on in their head and why they do what they do.
Artemis wants the fairy gold to fund searches for his missing father. Artemis GIVES UP a part of the fairy gold to Holly Short in exchange for the health of his grieving and delusional mother. As much of a 'not-kid' Artemis is, nothing matters to Artemis more than family. He likewise cares for Butler and Juliet, and I would talk about the complex relationship between Butler and Artemis, but that's for another post.
Some of my favorite moments in the first book are the times when Artemis interacts with his mother. He's less of a child genius and more of a kid who just doesn't know what to do. There is the time when we are first introduced to Mrs. Fowl, and she angrily throws her son out of her room because she doesn't recognize him. There is the time when Artemis thinks he hears his mother talking to his father and he runs to her room, and is disappointed and almost horrified to see that it is just another one of her delusions. Finally, there is that one time that Artemis acted like a child, greeting his cured mother with a hug, and anticipating celebrating Christmas with her.
I'm seriously sorry if this post seems like it's all over the place. Even I sometimes don't know where I'm going with this.
Anyway, the point is, Artemis is an incredibly complex character. Most minutes he's a brilliant mafia lord, very few and vital minutes he's just a messed up kid. I would hate for this character to be messed up by poor acting and/or poor script writing. I don't know of that many child actors, so I have no idea if there is a legitimately good preteen actor out there.

These guys are the ones that fans most hope will be considered for the role of Artemis Fowl. I recognize Asa Butterfield from Ender's Game, which I don't remember that well to be honest. From what I can remember though… he might be good for the role?? And I have no idea who the other three guys are, or at least I don't recognize them. I'll have to look them up, but who knows? Maybe one of them could perform a very good Artemis Fowl.
Irish screen writer Connor McPherson will be working on the movie. Ok, I seriously don't know enough about this guy to either be dubious or hopeful. I'm leaning more on hopeful, cause HEY, he's Irish! And the Artemis Fowl series largely takes place in Ireland! Is this relevant to Artemis Fowl himself? I don't think so, but… Ugh, my brain is starting to shut down this subject.
Make this Artemis Fowl movie good, Disney! You had better make it good…

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