Jack Thorne Talks Following Goodness at San Diego Comic-Con 2019

His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman is an epic book trilogy loved by many and has seen several adaptations for stage and screen, met with mixed results. The most recent adaptation of the series, which is slated to hit HBO later this year, was on full display at a special panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2019.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child playwright Jack Thorne wrote the small-screen adaptation of His Dark Materials. When asked what the key to adapting a beloved series is, he responded, “The first thing you have to do is get a PhD in the author, their work, and the truth of the material.” He was so committed to getting the world the author created portrayed accurately on-screen that he mentions they went through 46 drafts of the first episode to ensure everything was just right. He even spent the 11-hour plane ride to San Diego from the United Kingdom writing scripts and getting feedback from the series’ star, Ruth Wilson.

Thorne was joined on the panel by executive producer Jane Tranter along with a few of the show’s stars: Dafne Keen (Lyra Belacqua), Ruth Wilson (Marisa Coulter), Lin-Manuel Miranda (Lee Scoresby), and James McAvoy (Lord Asriel). The cast and crew talked about their experiences while filming as well as their interpretations of their characters and how they play into the main theme of the story.

Jack Thorne had this to say about the story, its main character, and its relevance to the world we currently live in:

This is an anti-superhero story. The thing I love about Lyra is that she’s constantly following the path of the good. I really believe we should be following our goodness now.

James McAvoy had this to say about author Philip Pullman and the religious themes present throughout the series:

He’s a celebrant of imagination and rational thought, and that can lead to faith.

With a rockstar cast and the already-proved brilliance of Jack Thorne’s writing as seen in Cursed Child, the His Dark Materials series is sure to be a hit. Keep an eye out on HBO for a release date later this year – we know you’re going to love it!

Helene Karp

I'm a passionate Hufflepuff who can't get enough of Potter and Marketing, so I combined them! For some reason I chose to live in Minneapolis, Minnesota where the weather makes me cry 9 months out of the year, so I guess you can say I'm a glutton for punishment. When I'm not working or re-reading Harry Potter I'm usually found watching a true crime documentary or obsessing over the Jonas Brothers.