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Fox Animation's Next film... Elizabeth Haydon's RHAPSODY'

Hey folks, Harry here... Just got in this bit about the possible next project from FOX ANIMATION. RHAPSODY... a quite wonderful fantasy novel by Elizabeth Haydon. Some draw parallels between this novel and the great fantasy work of Tolkien and Edding. Personally I'm still a believer in Tolkien as being the best fantasy author (for me anyways), but I've heard quite a bit of good things on this novel... If you want to know more about the storyline, etc... Click here to read the reviews and such on AMAZON

Just heard that Fox Animation is looking at a book called Rhapsody by Elizabeth Haydon to make after Titan AE. It is supposed to be some epic fantasy. I'll let you know if I hear anymore.


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  • Nov. 25, 1999, 4:23 a.m. CST

    Fantasy Fest

    by I'mAlanPartridge

    Anything that puts pressure on Lord of the RIngs to whoop every other films ass is a plus point.#Andf i think i'm first

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 4:27 a.m. CST

    Sequel Possibilities

    by DZed015

    First off, just want to say that Rhapsody is a great book, and I highly recommend it to anyone who cares. Anyway, the book is the first in a series of three, which obviously translates into a potential franchise for Fox. The main character, Rahpsody, does quite a bit of singing, but one can only hope Fox doesn't decide to turn this into the standard Disney-esque musical. There's some pretty mature subject matter in the book, so this could hopefully stand to be a foray into more "adult" animation. Yup.

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 4:30 a.m. CST

    Tolkien does rule

    by I'mAlanPartridge

    Yes, he is one of the giants on whose shoulders we stand. Not to denigrate other authors; I read David Eddings' Belgariad and Mallorean, when I was about twelve or thirteen and loved it. All very mystical, with prophecies and the like. However Tolkien was my first - and still is; few other people have managed to single-handedly create a world and populate with races with their own unique language and history. But this looks fun, I suppose, it's hard to comment on a cover illustration and a glowing review.

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 9:28 a.m. CST

    Lewis is d' man!

    by 0007

    In my opinion C.S.Lewis is the best fantasy author, and when I am an established film director in a few years, the world can expect not a few of his immortal tales to unfold before their glassy eyes. This is nice they are turning to established fantasy instead of making up stuff in board rooms; A spark of hope for filmmaking future...

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 9:58 a.m. CST

    Alan Partridge is right...

    by Prankster

    Sorry, when you consider how much of the groundwork of modern fantasy Tolkien laid, everyone else starts to look pretty unoriginal. It's like Tolkien built the theme park, and people like Eddings, Donaldson, Jordan, and Brooks have just been riding around on it ever since. It's quite astonishing how closely some of these epic fantasies adhere to Tolkien's work. In fact, the genre we usually call "fantasy" could more accurately be titled "Tolkien ripoffs". Fantasy on the whole is much broader genre. So, in other words, I really hope the Tolkien ripoffs don't migrate to film and dominate fantasy there the way they do in print. I'll have to see how Titan AE comes out before I say any more.

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 10:47 a.m. CST

    Tolkein is king, but...

    by Dave_F

    ...Ursula K. Le Guin is queen. Her Earthsea series is one of the few fantasy works I've read that measure up to the BIG MAN himself. Beautiful prose, original concepts, and nary an elf or dwarf in sight. The series as a whole has a melancholy air, but I think it'd be suitable for an animated adaptation in the right hands (who that would be I have no idea. Not Disney). And let's not forget Lloyd Alexander's Prydain Chronicles. Disney's miserable failure to translate the Black Cauldron just proves that they were the wrong folks to do the translating.

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 11:13 a.m. CST

    Damn you Harry! Damn you to hell!

    by Dave_F

    Eternal was right, you did misspell Tolkien! But, dammit, I followed in your footsteps and did the same thing in my post! I always mix up that "ie"/"ei" part, so I checked your original post, *secure* that the man who holds Tolkien in such esteem would get have used the proper spelling. So I followed your spelling, Harry, and you have brought shame and dishonor to me and my family. As soon as I post this, I shall lop off my pinky finger as penance. Thanks alot. ****** As for Haydon's Rhapsody...amusingly enough, I'd just finished reading Amazon's review of that very book moments before linking to the story on it here. Proof, surely, that psychic phenomena exists! Anyway, sounds pretty interesting, far from a rip-off of Tolkien. I'd buy it if not for the fact that it's only available in hardback right now. Mario "Godfather" Puzo liked it, and that ain't bad. I'll nab it in paperback or at the library.

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 11:16 a.m. CST


    by I'mAlanPartridge

    I've read all of them, both sets of all three or whatever. But not for about four or five years; I went through a heavy duty fantasy phase (nice alliteration, hey I'm pretty cool...sorry where was I?) when I was about thirteen. Consequently I probably can't remember details. However I would say they were all good. Eddings comes last; good story but felt a lil' cliched. However I loved all the prophecy fulfilment stuff AND *SPOLIER* IF U HAVEN@T READ BELGARIAD* was quite affected by the death of Torak, and how the other gods reacted. He did wrong but he was still a god and their brother and they mourned him. Donaldson was complicated; there's a review on somewhere, this guys writing essays on LOTR and referred to Covenant. I liked them, Covenant was very real, painful, etc. Rape scene and all. It's very emotive in places, describing insiduous evil corrupting good intentions. I found the second chronicles more disturbing *SPOILER* when he returns to the land and everything that he eventually came to value ahs been corrupted again, even Mhoram's name. It's full of sacrifice, pain and struggle. But having said all that, a bit like Orpheus said about TPM (not that I agree with most of what he said) LOTR is a 'simple' story that reveals a lot more when taking into account Tolkien's christianity, professorship and vast knowledge of Literature. But LOTR is no more a religious tract as TPM is a philosophcial pamphlet; they're both very good stories, with depth and meaning. I just prefer LOTR to any other fantasy, and StarWars to any other cinematic universe created. Tolkien still rules! I've proved it...{the rest of this post is edited as Alan Partridge unwilling descends into an Orpheus like explanation of LOTR)

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 11:16 a.m. CST


    by Ashen Shugar

    I definitely believe that Feist created the best fantasy world and stories with the Riftwar saga and the Serpentwar saga. Tolkien is certainly the first, and without him there would have been nothing; But Feist rules!

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 11:53 a.m. CST


    by n3bul4

    that movie is going to suck ass...

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 12:01 p.m. CST


    by n3bul4

    ok first i want to make a statement TOKIEN IS GOD ... no one compares to him and no one will , no one, thats it ,no fucking one . so all of you who think that LotR is boring can suck my p.p. because ive read it 67 times and i readit every goddamned week ... Why ? because its not boring . its a marvelous story . I think that your problem is that youve never had the courage to read the books you think its boring because its 3 books , but letme tell you if you read it ,and I mean really read , wanting to read it you will stop thinking about anything else so doit and then come talk about what you know not what you think

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 12:22 p.m. CST


    by n3bul4

    let me fix that TOLKIEN IS GOD ... jeje missed the L

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 12:26 p.m. CST


    by Wicker Man

    Although _The_Fionavar_Tapestry_ has been called a "Tolkien rip-off" by some of my friends, The author himself describes it as a homage to JRR, which kind of excuses the similarities. Guy Gavriel Kay was the ghost writer on The Silmarillion. His own work , particularly _Lions_of_Al_Rassan_, stand up as some of the best fantasy around. I would also put The Covenant books & Wizard of Earthsea as great books. Eddings, Feist, and Jordan are enjoyable reads, but hardly great.

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 4:20 p.m. CST

    RHAPSODY rules

    by solstice

    I read RHAPSODY when it came out in September, and it is one rockin' read. Kick ass characters, lots of humor, beautiful writing--better than Le Guin. The comparisons to Tolkein in terms of caliber of writing are accurate, in that she has an amazing skill with words, but her characters are more interesting. The stories are not similar, but there is a feel that both LOTR and Rhapsody share. It would be great if this is a half-live half-animated/special effects project like Star Wars. Donaldson's books were great but they started to ramble around book 2--he could have cut 1000 pages out of that series and it would have been better. David Eddings by comparison is boring. Pick up DOMES OF FIRE, and open to any page. They will be talking. Not fighting, not having sex, just talking. BORING! Rhapsody rules. I'm glad to see a new author getting some props. Carl

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 4:29 p.m. CST

    PS Haydon chat

    by solstice

    By the way, is hosting a chat with Elizabeth Haydon on wed. Dec 15 at 3:00pm EST.

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 4:29 p.m. CST

    PS Haydon chat

    by solstice

    By the way, is hosting a chat with Elizabeth Haydon on wed. Dec 15 at 3:00pm EST.

  • Nov. 25, 1999, 7:45 p.m. CST

    Feist - yes

    by lame

    Havent read a fantasy book for a few years as they tend to be comic-book like after a while. Raymond Feist's first series, Riftwar saga however, fantastic. Magician is one of the best novels I have read for an introduction to the Fantasy genre. Donaldson will always be my favourite as he treats the reader as an adult, not a 10 year old (like Eddings does). Donaldson has also written one of the best sci-fi ever, The GAP into... series, awesome. Lord of the Rings, sorry to say it and I am in the minority I know, but I found it dead boring - bunch of trolls walking around doing not much, guess I missed the point. If a movie should be made about fantasy worlds (lets face it, most have sucked bigtime), It should be the Riftwar series (animated???), lots of action and a story that could be broken down to a movie trilogy (maybe). Once again, Feist=cool.

  • Nov. 26, 1999, 12:29 a.m. CST

    Rhapsody movie

    by annie314

    If you haven't read this book yet, ask for it for your holiday of choice. To compare any author to Tolkien borders on blasphemy, but I must own to feeling that this is the BEST book I've read in years. As far as this movie rumor...I know this is probably a really bad place to say this (amongst all these animation aficionados), but I for one don't want to risk seeing this excellent literary work bastardized in this way. There are just too many bad movies from good books, and this story doesn't deserve the mediocrity of animation. Yes I have seen what they're doing now and I'm NOT impressed.

  • Nov. 26, 1999, 2:06 a.m. CST

    A great fantasy writer whose works would make wonderful animated

    by tv`snick

    ... is Brian Jaques, who wrote the Redwall series. The first three of this now-10-or-so series would make a great trilogy of animated films, but they'd have to do them in the original Ep2-Ep3-Ep1 order. If you did Ep1 first, a lot of the mystery of Ep2 would be lost... can anyone back me up here? Redwall, Mattimeo, Martin the Warrior. After that, the series has some great characters, but loses some originality... great for Elementary/Junior High/High Schoolers to read... great childhood memories.

  • Nov. 26, 1999, 3:33 a.m. CST

    ok ok ok wait

    by n3bul4

    hold up hold up people let me repeat TOLKIEN IS GOD.... really and he is not comparable to no one sorry and if you think LOTR is boring then you know shit about the theme .. sorry ... I advise you to read LOTR with desire to read it ... oh and dont mind my typos if any im drunk right now,,, :o)

  • Nov. 26, 1999, 8:31 p.m. CST

    n3bul4 and random ramblings

    by Qatseri

    Dude, chill out. Everyone's entitled to their own opinion, even if it differs from mine and is therefore wrong. To say that Tolkien is God is a bit foolish. I'm fairly certain that if there is a god, he was born a bit before Tolkien. Any way, LOTR is, IMHO the greatest fantasy series ever. He did not, however, create the genre. Authorian Fiction, also fantasy, has been around since the tenth century or so, and has been written basically continuously since Tennyson in the 19th Century. For a different fantasy "rif", I highly recommend the Mists of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley. As for Donaldson and Eddings, both have elements to their stories that are Superior to LOTR. Donaldson's series' examined depression and the darkness in the soul like no other. However, they did not tend to be long-winded (much like this post), much more so than Tolkien I believe. Eddings is written less intensely than either of the two. Consequently, at least his first series, moves quickly with dynamic characters and humurous dialogue. The second series is the same as the first for the most part, which tends to be true of most Sequel Trilogies. Anyway, I haven't read Rhapsody. The review does not sound promising to me in terms of plot, but I'll check it out either when the trilogy is finished or a few weeks before the movie comes out, whichever comes first. I'm guessing comparisons to any of the above authors are a bit overblown. That's just a guess though obviously. Peace through random Violenc.

  • Nov. 26, 1999, 10:18 p.m. CST

    Rhapsody deserves better

    by solstice

    I heard that Rhapsody was optioned by someone who used to work for Steven Bochco. The fact they are talking with Fox is both cool and disturbing. If they are making it into a half-live, half animated feature it might be cool, but I would hate to see it be a cartoon. All you Tolkien freaks out there [and I am one of you] CHILL OUT! If everybody who approaches the master in talent is driven away by jerks who can only read one trilogy and condemn everything else to the shitpile, there would be nothing else to read. Haydon is a great contender, not to replace Tolkien, but to carry on his legacy. She's a hell of a lot better than Robert Jordan and Terry Goodkind, who are the current pretenders to the throne. Cut the woman a break. She wrote an awesome book. She's not Tolkien. She never said she was.

  • Nov. 27, 1999, 2:04 a.m. CST

    Two other brilliant authors...

    by Renly

    I agree with most on this board, that Brooks and the like are riding a nostalgia wave with their books, and so I try to look for fantasy authors that put a twist on things, or go a different route altogether. I thought Terry Goodkind was onto something with Wizard's First Rule, but it has now become clear that he has no overall plan, and is just cranking as many sequels out in as short a time span as he can manage. Laaaaaaame! Gee, another whole book will go by where Richard and Kahlan have like 5 minutes total of lovin', before another wacky adventure gets in the way. Hack. Anyway, Melanie Rawn has completed two trilogies already, both taking place in the same world, and is now 2 volumes into a completely new series,"Exiles". I highly recommend them all. Secondly, George R.R. Martin's unwieldy-titled saga, A Song of Ice and Fire, is also 2 volumes in. The first is called A Game of Thrones. This is an excellent series, and is much less into all the wizardry and such, and deals more heavily with inter-kingdom treachery and backstabbing. Very cool. Now, this is where this post becomes unnecessary. Terry Brooks' "The Sword of Shannara" could not be a bigger rip-off (homage?) to LOTR if he intentionally wrote one. The group (fellowship) that goes searching for the sword (ring) has: 1 dwarf, 1 elf (they fight, then become best friends), one man of imminent stature but shady past, one impetuous man of action, one wizard, and two young men (almost children, one might say) from a place called Shady Vale. The fellowship travels together, goes through a treacherous mountain cave with a host of booby traps, then gets separated and go their different ways. The good man goes to his home, which might as well be called Gondor, where they face hordes of trolls, and keep an eye out for thunderous cavalry from the west. Give me a Freakin' Break!!!!!! Okay, sorry about that. So, to recap, Martin and Rawn, good. Brooks and Goodkind, bad. Robert Jordan, um, derivative, yes, but still one hell of a read. Plus, has lots of cool words that can be appropriated and used in every day language, so I can be a bigger dork when I say something like "Oh, light, I won again? I've got the Dark One's own luck". --Renly

  • Nov. 27, 1999, 2:55 p.m. CST

    ok ok ok wait again

    by n3bul4

  • Nov. 27, 1999, 3 p.m. CST

    ok ok ok wait again

    by n3bul4

    someones got me wrong here . I may be a Tolkien freak but... ive read all other stuff ... and of course that tolkien didnt make the genre there are stories of dragons and creatures from ages ago ... tolkien juet organized it in a believable way . You know it and I know it . And you know that all these stories came from readers who wanted to write something like tolkien they couldn't and no one will ! thank you

  • Nov. 27, 1999, 6:22 p.m. CST


    by Tyrion_Lannister

    You can gather from my user ID I'm a fantasy buff. You can also gather that I'm a fan of George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire. But anyway... 1) Rhapsody is one fine book. But I think the people at FOX might run into a few problems. Rhapsody is an ex-prostitute. I doubt they're going to let her remain so in an adaptation. Which is a shame--it screws everything up. The book is also considerably long for a live action movie, let alone an animated movie. 2) Jordan rules. Even if the last two books sucked pretty bad. 3) Goodkind is nice reading. I'm still buying the books. 4) Le Guin's Earthsea does indeed rock. 5) Donaldson's Covenant books are awesome. The six of them. A live action version of the first trilogy, shot back to back like they're doing LotR would be fantastic. Pretty rough stuff though. 6) To the guy who said fantasy books are always just like comic books after some time: read some fantasy that's not mainstream, like Elizabeth Hand's Waking the Moon, or James P. Blaylock's Winter Tides, or anything by Tim Powers. Elizabeth Lynn's Watchtower, if you're not into contemporary fantasy. 7) Stop comparing everyone to Tolkien. THE IMP

  • Nov. 27, 1999, 7:06 p.m. CST

    Books into movies

    by solstice

    Not every book that is a great read will make a great, or even a good, movie. I pray that LOTR is good, and with the cast and plans to film all three at once, it has a good chance. But Wheel of Time, or Song of Ice and Fire, or any other of these epics would never translate to the screen because they are not written that way. I had to go out and get this book [Rhapsody] when I saw Harry's post and I stayed up all night to finish it--an amazing read. I can see why a producer picked it out from all the other fantasy offerings out there, because it is very DIFFERENT. Most importantly, it is written very visually, like a series of scenes, and has the best description I've ever seen in a fantasy work. If you cannot visualize the dead city carved into the mountains of Canrif or the inside of Sagia, the Oak of Deep Roots, there is something wrong with you. I agree with the guy who said that Fox will have some problems if they try to "Disneyize" this story, and not deal with the adult content of the book. It is fast becoming a classic--the other day Amazon named it one of the ten best sf/f books of the year, and one of only two that were fantasy. I would hate like hell to see them screw it up. Finally, let me be clear about this: Terry Brooks is a parasite whose success has NEVER been from his own creativity. He hopped on the Tolkien bandwagon with Shannara, which is a stupid, cut and paste ripoff with none of the magic that Tolkien had. He ripped off Phillip Pullman's GOLDEN COMPASS books with his current RUNNING WITH THE DEMON trilogy, and then Lucas handed him the top of the bestseller list by allowing him to write the Star Wars tie in. His own stuff sucks. Terry Goodkind has done the same thing to Robert Jordan. Wizard's First Rule, and even the second book had some promise, but the rest have gone rapidly downhill to the bottom of the barrel where the fifth book, the horrible SOUL OF THE FIRE, lies.

  • Nov. 28, 1999, 4:28 a.m. CST

    fox animation

    by andy kaufman

  • Nov. 28, 1999, 6:53 p.m. CST


    by lame

    To Tyrion_Lannister, I was the guy who said that fantasy were all like comic books after awhile (read too much Eddings I guess). Thanks for the author referrals, I'll give them a shot. I always thought that Julian May's Saga of the Exiles would make a good (albeit complex) movie series although the Tanu might be tricky to pull-off on film. Thanks again.

  • Nov. 28, 1999, 11:09 p.m. CST

    Titan AE will bomb so they'll can this.

    by Larry_Talbot

    Fox will disband the studio when Titan AE opens to a $4m weekend. I'm taking bets.

  • Nov. 29, 1999, 12:16 p.m. CST

    You're welcome.

    by Tyrion_Lannister

    You're welcome, lame! I never read Julian May, and I'll look for the books. Someone at this Talk Back mentioned Guy Gavriel Kay's books, and I'd also recommend them to you if you have not read them already (I'd read Tigana first), in case you want to escape Eddings-like quest fantasy. Don't know if you enjoy science-fiction (Julian May writes science-fiction, doesn't she?), but I've been having a blast going through the whole Miles Vorkosigan series by Lois McMaster Bujold (just finished reading A Civil Campaign a couple of weeks back), and currently am reading all of the Iain M. Banks Culture novels. I think Consider Phlebas, especifically, with some tweaking here or there, would be terrific movie material!

  • Nov. 29, 1999, 5:54 p.m. CST

    Thieves & Kings

    by Dave_F

    Anybody else out there reading "Thieves & Kings"? It's probably the best fantasy-themed comic book on the market, and it holds up well against the various prose authors mentioned here (better than some of 'em). Its combination of traditional comic storytelling along with some illustrated prose (ala "Cerebus") means that it probably wouldn't translate well to live-action or animation - too bad in a way, if only because the story deserves a wider audience than comic books command. Check out the collections (there's three out at the moment) if you're looking for some original fantasy.

  • Nov. 29, 1999, 5:55 p.m. CST


    by lame

    Ive read a few Iain M Banks, Exursion comes to mind. He's got good ideas but writers are finding ways to be more and more obtuse in conclusion. Example, I just finished William Gibson's (God of Cyberspace) All the Worlds Parties, which really grabbed me from the start but the end was so flat that I felt somewhat cheated. Not as cheated as at the conclusion of Hannibal, but still somewhat. As to Julian May, Saga of the Exiles is really a scifi/fantasy hybrid, there are also some straight scifi in Intervention/Jack the Bodiless and Illusio Diamond Mask, all worth a look.

  • Nov. 30, 1999, 11:23 a.m. CST

    Julian May

    by Tyrion_Lannister

    I went through my 'to read' book stack, and found Jack the Bodiless, Diamond Mask, and Magnificat. Can those be read before the Intervention novels?

  • Nov. 30, 1999, 6:08 p.m. CST

    Order of May

    by lame

    Julian May's books can be read in the order they were published being Saga of the Exiles (4 books), Intervention, Jack the Bodiless, Illusio Diamond Mask then Magnificat. However in the time line of her universe, the order is the same but the Exiles books come last. It all still makes sense either way but Exiles is the better series so I would read that first.

  • Nov. 30, 1999, 9:31 p.m. CST


    by Tyrion_Lannister

    Thanks a lot, lame, I'll go look for the Exiles series and read that first.

  • Dec. 1, 1999, 2:34 a.m. CST


    by solstice

    Over the weekend I got an email from that said RHAPSODY had been chosen as one of their 10 best sci-fi/fantasy books of 1999. I checked the list, and there is really only one other fantasy on it, the rest are all hard core sci fi. Given that she's a first time author that's pretty amazing.

  • Dec. 1, 1999, 9:32 a.m. CST

    Rhapsody website

    by annie314

    Hey Solstice, have you checked out

  • Dec. 2, 1999, 1:33 a.m. CST

    I have now!

    by solstice

    Dear Annie, I have now, thanks! It is one of the best author's websites I've ever seen, with some really great links to weapons and herbalism sites as well. I'm not surprised to see the creativity and scholarship that went into the website, since the book is like that too. Thanks again. I highly recommend it to

  • Feb. 21, 2010, 12:53 p.m. CST

    by TheUmpireStrokesBach