Two months to the day since Netflix dropped the eight-episode first season of A Series of Unfortunate Events, the streaming home confirmed – via letter from Lemony Snicket himself – that season 2 is on the way.
Despite Daniel Handler (aka the author behind the pseudonym Snicket) and producer-star Neil Patrick Harris both independently confirming development and pre-production on the second season was ongoing before the first even premiered, Netflix, as it did with the smash Stranger Things, took its time to “officially” renew their latest hit. They did so via the website vastlyfrighteningdecision.com, which has a hilariously-droll letter from Snicket, and a YouTube video. Check out both below.
It is produced by Handler and director Barry Sonnenfeld, who was previously up to direct the 2004 franchise non-starter starring Jim Carrey, before he stepped aside and was replaced with Brad Siberling. Harris stars in the Netflix series as the villainous Count Olaf, who relentlessly pursues the Baudelaire orphans Violet, Klaus, and Sunny for their inheritance. He’s joined by Patrick Warburton as Snicket and K. Todd Freeman as the hapless banker Mr. Poe. Joan Cusack, Aasif Mandvi, Alfre Woodard Catherine O’Hara, Don Johnson, and Rhys Darby guest starred at various points in the first season.
A Series of Unfortunate Events season 2 will consist of 10 episodes and adapt books 5-9 in the 13-book saga of the Baudelaire orphans. We’ll see it in 2018. If I had to guess, the likeliest is Friday, April 13, 2018, another Friday the 13th like the first season’s release date. It will then wrap up with a third season adapting books 10-13 (likely 8 episodes like the first), which Handler hopes to get into production quickly afters season 2 before the child actors age out of the roles. I don’t know about you guys, but I can’t wait.
10 Book-To-Film Adaptations That Succeeded (And 15 That Failed)
As tomorrow’s big Netflix release, the second go-around at adapting A Series of Unfortunate Events, proves, adaptations of beloved source material are not easy to make.
Books and film, like all arts, have a special relationship. The turn of the century saw a massive increase in adaptations of epic fantasy and science-fiction, particularly for the coveted youth market, thanks mostly to two big franchises – Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings. Both legitimized fantasy as big-budget spectacle and prestige entertainment, when done with care. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and the years since are littered with attempts at replicating the magic of those films, including the original Unfortunate Events movie, which is first up on our list (as an ambitious-but-flawed failure).
Now, in the age of Peak TV, adapting these massive sagas are possible on television too. The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones both kicked open doors to imitators in the same ways Potter and Rings did, in terms of scope and budget. Shows like MTV’s Shannara and Hulu’s upcoming The Handmaid’s Tale, both based on famous books, draw directly from this trend. It’s also given second life to properties that didn’t work as features, such as Unfortunate Events.
For this article, I focused on the biggest in YA and children’s literature, in honor of Unfortunate Events return to screens (I’ll be recapping a “book” aka two episodes a day starting tomorrow morning!), while focusing on the criteria to rank them by. When it comes to judging these stories – some classics, some decidedly not – I kept in mind whether the films a) received a sequel b) made money at the box-office and c) were critically acclaimed.
- Honorary success mentions: Matilda, James and the Giant Peach, Stardust, The Spiderwick Chronicles, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children
- Honorary failure mentions: Bridge to Terabithia, Charlotte’s Web, The Host
Click Next to scroll through all the failures and successes.