letters from angie

MAGYK Movie News

Things so far:

About five years ago, Warner Brothers purchased an option to buy the Septimus Heap series. This meant that they had time to work out how they were going to do the first movie, MAGYK, and indeed whether they were going to do it at all. As I understand it, movie studios option quite a few books, but that does not mean the books will necessarily be made into movies. Many fall by the wayside.

The contract agreed that the option for Septimus Heap was to be renewed after 18 months and then again after another 18 months. Warner Brothers renewed at both these stages and then asked for extra time so that they could get a really good presentation together. The presentation would consist of the screenplay (which is the script plus lots of stage direction) and also some visuals. These would show the general visual feel of the movie and would also show the landscape and specific areas, like the Castle and the Marram Marshes. The backgrounds will be computer generated and the studio working on these is Industrial Light and Magic, part of Lucasfilms. This is a really fantastic studio! We also understand, though we are not totally sure, that the action may well be image capture (think Avatar).

Along the way MAGYK the movie had an amazing piece of good fortune – David Frankel agreed to be director and also pilot MAGYK through the early, pre green-light stages. David is a whiz with scripts and characters and is a really talented director.

The last piece of news we had was a few months ago, when Warner Brothers exercised their option to purchase the series—which means they purchased the rights to make movies based on all seven books. Purchasing an option is a big commitment by a movie studio and it takes us through to another stage.

The future:

The next step will be for the movie to be given the green light. This happens when the studio have the finance in place for the film and are ready to go. It means that the movie will be made. We are not green lit yet … but we do hope this may happen soon.

I know lots of you would love to be in the movie, but whether Warner Brothers have open auditions or not is completely up to them. Casting will not take place until MAGYK gets the green light. Please, please understand that the movie studio is casting the movie, not me! If I hear anything about what they intend to do about auditions – and when we get the green light I promise I will ask – I will post it here. And Tweet it! And send it out throughout the land by Message Rat. So as soon as I hear, you will hear too.

Categories: angie sage, letters from angie, magyk, septimus heap the movie | Tags: , , , , , | 35 Comments

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DARKE is out!  Well, it’s out in the USA and we in the UK are having to be patient for a bit longer. (OK, a lot longer.) I know some people here are buying the US edition on Amazon and have asked what the difference is. Well, it is a little different from the UK edition in that it is in American English, has a different board cover – a plain colour with symbols pressed into it, which I think looks great, and it also has those lovely untrimmed pages. So the choice is yours…

Apart from hoping DARKE is going to do really, really well, I am getting on with Book 7 now and hoping to be halfway through by the time DARKE comes out here in the UK. When it is published here I’ll be travelling around the country doing lots of signings – really looking forward to that too.

So, on behalf of all of us in the UK I want to ask a big favour (I know Shauki has already posted this): please don’t give away anything in DARKE on the Ask Angie sections – not until October. Just so that people can still enjoy reading it in October, not knowing what’s going to happen. Thank you! Have a nice summer (or winter in Oz).


Categories: angie sage, book 6, BOOK 7, Darke, letters from angie | 34 Comments

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Hi everyone,
We’ve got some movie news! (You heard it here first!)
Karen Rosenfelt, the producer, has said that:

They will be shooting the test at Industrial Light and Magic in the first and second week of May. It will probably take about 12 weeks to finish the test, since there is a lot of CGI. Rick Carter just joined the project as the production designer. Rick has worked on movies such as BACK TO THE FUTURE, JURASSIC PARK, WAR OF THE WORLDS and AVATAR. The studio is very enthusiastic about the project!

This is great as it brings the film closer to being give the green light (the go-ahead).
Note to all aspiring actors: this does not mean Warners will be doing any casting yet. This won’t happen until the movie is green lit.
So … let’s wait and see and wish it well,


Categories: angie sage, letters from angie, magyk, septimus heap the movie | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

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Hi all,
I’m on Chapter 4 of book 7 now, which is a little weird, really. It is hard to believe that I’m on the last one. But I don’t think it will be the end of Septimus – I still have a few ideas for Septimus books outside the main series.
Meanwhile, Stanley has discovered Twitter and taken to it like a duck to water – or a rat to a drain. You can catch him on @StanleyMsgRat and if you want to find me I’m @AngieSageAuthor, but I don’t talk as much as Stanley. But then, who does?

Happy Spring (almost)

Categories: angie sage, BOOK 7, books, characters, letters from angie | Tags: , , , | 23 Comments

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Hi everyone,

I waved goodbye to DARKE forever yesterday. The little yellow courier van took the proofs back to America to HarperCollins. I have spent the last week just checking through everything, making sure it all makes sense and reads well. And it does! Mark has done some really beautiful new illustrations. There’s a lovely new – somewhat romantic – one of Simon, a new one of Marcia too, also Sep and Beetle – both a little older and a lot more confident. And for duck fanciers there is a special one of Ethel in her new waistcoat.

Now for the less fun stuff. I know lots of fans are unhappy with the UK publishing date – and that includes me too. I have talked this over a lot with my editor at Bloomsbury. Both she and I were trying to find various solutions, including maybe a limited release in June, but in the end nothing was possible and of course they must have the final say in this. I asked Bloomsbury for a statement explaining the problem that I could post here and this is it:

“There are big differences between the US and UK hardback and paperback markets. We will be publishing DARKE hardback in autumn because autumn makes a lot more sense for our UK market.

“We cannot give an advance release to limited bookshops because that would be unfair to their competitors.

“Our export paperback is always available before the UK paperback, but this time it also available before the hardback UK edition as we have to match the American publication date in areas where both editions can be sold.”

I hope this explains things, even though it doesn’t fix them.

I’m off to get started on the Prologue of Book 7 now…

Happy February!

Categories: angie sage, book 6, BOOK 7, books, characters, Darke, letters from angie | Tags: , , , , , | 16 Comments

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Hi everyone,

Snow snow snow! Yes, we have snow almost at Christmas and we are really excited (we don’t often get snow in south west England).
I finished the copy edit for DARKE last week and so now have space to think about the last Septimus. It doesn’t seem possible that the next book really is the last in the series. But I would still like to write Marcia’s story and maybe revisit the Castle in ten years time and see what is going on. So it’s not over yet.

You can follow me on Twitter now – AngieSageAuthor is me. And yes, I do tweet quite often, I like Twitter as it’s so simple and immediate.

Here’s wishing everyone a very happy Christmas and a brilliant 2011 (when we might hear a lot more about the film…)!


Categories: angie sage, book 6, books, Darke, letters from angie, septimus heap the movie | Tags: , , , , | 13 Comments

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Hello everyone,

DARKE is done! At last. It’s taken a long time to write, but it’s been worth it—I hope you think so too when you get to read it.
When I began writing DARKE I knew I wanted to stay in the Castle for this book. In all the previous books people go off on a journey somewhere, often for most of the time. This, I told myself, is going to be a Castle book. Well … I nearly did it. But I couldn’t resist a small excursion—definitely not the fun, holiday kind—towards the end. But mainly this is a Castle book.
It is also of course about Jenna, Septimus and Beetle growing every nearer to what they want to be. Whenever I write a Septimus book I realise that I am slowly making good all the chaos and bad stuff that happened to everyone in MAGYK—and in FLYTE too. Well, there’s a lot of repair work in DARKE: look out for Simon, Merrin and Wolf Boy.
Now here’s a weird, slightly nerdy, thing… When I began writing MAGYK I wanted to make sure all the tide times were right (I based them on where I lived then, near Falmouth in Cornwall). Tides follow the moon, so I looked up the phases of the moon. I wanted to find a full moon on December 21st, the shortest day of the year, and I found it in 1991. So I used the phases of the Moon from then onwards throughout all the books. This meant that when I came to DARKE I thought I had a problem. I wanted to begin the book once again on the shortest day of the year—Jen and Sep’s fourteenth birthdays—but this time I wanted there to be no moon at all that night: the dark of the moon. I went back to the phases of the moon to December 21st 1995, wondering what I would find. It was the dark of the moon! Cue spooky noises…

Happy Halloween…


Categories: angie sage, book 6, books, Darke, letters from angie | Tags: , , , | 33 Comments

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Hello everyone,

Well, last week I finally wrote the last line of DARKE! It’s gone well, I think, but now I have to go back and rewrite some bits and check it all fits together logically (otherwise I know at least one of you will notice!). If I have time, which I think I do, I will read it out aloud to myself too. It’s really interesting how things can look fine on the page and sound very clunky when you read them out aloud. So, like Sep, I am nearly out of the Darke, but not quite…

Movie news: Warner Brothers extended their option on Septimus a couple of weeks ago. They need more time to put together all the things they need to in order to get the go-ahead. So it’s still on track, but not at the definite stage yet. But I do think it is looking really promising.

Happy summer (or winter down south),


Categories: angie sage, book 6, books, Darke, letters from angie, septimus heap the movie | Tags: , , , , | 32 Comments

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Hi Everyone,

This is written from the depths of the Darke
It’s been a very long time since I logged onto the site (I didn’t realise quite how long). Thanks for all your patience waiting for replies. I feel like I’ve been in another universe for a while. Sheesh.
But I’m on chapter 45 now!

It’s been a brilliant summer here in Somerset, but me and the tortoises have not noticed much of it – yet… but we have plans for boats and things. Not the tortoises actually, they will stay lettuce-munching in the garden.

You can find me at the Port Eliot Festival in Cornwall, UK, on Sunday July 25th. I’ll be talking about Syren and then will be in the House of Fairy tales talking about one of my favourite books when I was a kid – Moonfleet by JM Faulkner.

Hope you are all having a great summer too – or a wonderful winter if you are way down south.


Categories: angie sage, book 6, books, Darke, festivals, letters from angie, syren | Tags: , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Letters from Angie Sage (8)

Hi Everyone,

Back from Oz! It was really great there. I met lots of fans in Perth and then had some holiday too. Escaped a hurricane and saw some very big spiders…
And now I am hiding away and am deep in the depths of DARKE.
So I shall draw the blinds, tell those pesky birds to stop singing so loud and forget that here it is a beautiful spring.
Because back at the Castle it is deepest winter and the Dark of the Moon…


Categories: angie sage, book 6, books, Darke, letters from angie | Tags: , , , | 24 Comments

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