Neil and Dave on HP and JKR
Sep 28, 2005
With Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean’s Mirrormask set for limited release in the US this weekend, recent interviews with both men have highlighted McKean’s contribution to the Harry Potter films and the recent publication of a short story by Neil Gaiman that touches on a C.S. Lewis-related topic that JKR spoke about this summer.
Tasha Robinson of The Onion’s AV Club interviewed Gaiman and McKean.
Dave McKean spoke about his work as a conceptual artist for Prisoner of Azkaban, especially on the Dementors and Buckbeak. Neil Gaiman discussed his story, “The Problem Of Susan”, which spins off of the character of Susan in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe:
[I] was trying to figure out how to craft the story so that C.S. Lewis’ estate lawyer would say “I probably couldn’t get an injunction against this. This is borderline, but you could probably get away with it.” And I think that I probably did. I hope. It’s a problem story. Every now and then, someone comes up to me and says “That was an enormously wonderful story,” and other people get really offended by it. One woman described it as “blasphemous,” which I loved, that a potshot at a fictional lion from a series of children’s books could be seriously described as blasphemous. It’s just one of those moments where you look at a children’s book and there’s a thing that sticks in your head and irritates you. I was amused to see an interview with J.K. Rowling in Time where she started going off about the problem of Susan again.
Also, there was another small mention in Time ‘s editorial about “Geek Chic”; they focused on the relative hipness of comic books, Joss Whedon’s Serenity, which also comes out this weekend, and films like Napoleon Dynamite; the author also make mention of “emerging Harry Potter hottie Emma Watson”.