The Power of The Dark Crystal (partially lost production materials from canceled sequel to "The Dark Crystal" fantasy film; 1982-2014)
The Power of The Dark Crystal was a planned film sequel to Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal, but due to various production troubles and financial issues, these plans ended up being scrapped. And would later be adapted into a twelve-issue comic series by BOOM! Studios.
The film went through development hell for many years.
The idea for The Power of The Dark Crystal came during the production of the original film. As Jim Henson himself was interested in doing a sequel as he discussed various idea's with writer David Odell. Odell would later write a script based on these ideas.
Many years later, in May 2005, The Jim Henson Company announced the beginning of the film's production. With shooting planned for later that year and a 2007 release. On February 1st, 2006, it was announced that animation industry legend, Genndy Tartakovsky, was going to direct. The production company, The Orphanage providing the CG effects. Though the film would still mostly utilize practical effects and puppets.
Though originally meant for a 2008 release, it was announced during the 2007 San Diego Comic-Con that The Jim Henson Company had pushed the release date back to 2009.
"Fans of The Dark Crystal did detect that we were moving a little slowly, and it’s kind of true - we had a little setback but are back on track. The movie will not be coming out until 2009 so we're not going to be showing anything for a while."
- Lisa Henson, 2007
Despite this promise of a 2009 release, the film was still stuck in development. The only announcements were that writer Craig Pearce was rewriting the screenplay and that Omnilab Media was helping to produce. Because of the rewrite, the release date was once again pushed back. This time to 2011.
For a while, production went silent. But it was later announced that not only had the directing job been switched from Genndy Tartakovsky to the Spierig brothers (seemingly without Tartakovsky's knowledge), but that the film would be shot in stereoscopic 3D. Even receiving the nickname "Power of The Dark Crystal 3D"
On September 18th, 2011, it was announced that The Power of The Dark Crystal was put on hiatus, despite a planned 2013 release. Due to various budgetary issues, both the Spierig brothers and Omnilab Media left the production in 2012.
Eventually, all film plans were scrapped. And the screenplay would later be adapted into a twelve-issue comic series, The Power Of The Dark Crystal, by BOOM! Studios and Archaia Comics. Which released the first issue on February 22nd, 2017, and the final issue on March 14th, 2018.
Whether or not any footage, animated assets, or puppets were made for the film currently remains unknown.
Set many years after the events of the first film, Jen and Kira have been named the rulers of Thra. Thurma, a "fireling" (originally called the "U-mun" in the early drafts), has journeyed from her home in the planet's center to save the dying sun that keeps her race alive. To do this, however, she must take a shard from the crystal itself. Along the way, she meets Kensho, a gelfling outcast, who decides to accompany her on her journey. When Jen and Kira refuse to give up a shard of the crystal, Thurma takes matters into her own hands and steals a shard for herself. Disaster strikes when this causes the urSkeks to once again split into the Skeksis and the Mystics. Leaving both Kensho and Thurma to travel to the center of Thra to try and revive the dying sun.
- Sam and Friends (partially found Jim Henson puppet TV series; 1955-1961)
- Wilkins and Wontkins (partially lost series of Jim Henson commercials; 1957-1969)
- The Muppets' early ads (partially lost series of commercials; 1962-1969)
- Sesame Street (partially lost children's educational TV series; 1969-present)
- The Dark Crystal (partially found high-quality version of workprint/director's cut of puppet fantasy film; early 1980s)
- Fraggle Rock (partially found British co-production of puppet children's television series; 1984-1990)
- Muppets In Space (lost early drafts of "Muppets From Space" sci-fi family film; 1999)
- Genndy Tartakovsky on his involvement with The Power of The Dark Crystal.
- The Power of The Dark Crystal on the cover of Cinefantastique
- MTV's article on The Power of The Dark Crystal. Retrieved 13 Sept '20
- Variety's article on the film. Retrieved 14 Sept '20
- A press release regarding the film. Retrieved 14 Sept '20
- A promotional flier for the film. Retrieved 14 Sept '20
- The Comic-Con announcement. Retrieved 14 Sept '20
- The 2009 announcements Retrieved 14 Sept '20
- 2010 press release Retrieved 14 Sept '20
- Huffington Post's article on the film Retrieved 15 Sept '20
- An article regarding Omnilab's and the Spierig's departure Retrieved 15 Sept '20
- LA Times article on the comic. Retrieved 15 Sept '20
- The film's plot. Retrieved 15 Sept '20