Pre-production on the upcoming Disney+ Original series, “Percy Jackson And The Olympians” is underway in Vancouver, Canada and recently, the show’s executive producer, Rick Riordan shared some details on how the recently announced cast, Walker Schobel, Aryan Simhadri and Leah Sava Jeffries, has been getting on.
You also wouldn’t believe how quickly our young trio of heroes has coalesced into a team. They are doing high-flying stunts, learning their swordplay, fine-tuning their knowledge of Greek mythology and their characters — all while going to school on site at the studios! And of course, they have found the best snacks in the break room. If you want to know where the best snacks are, ask a middle-schooler. They have counseled me on trying the deluxe hot chocolate (not the regular stuff) and the dried seaweed packets, which are delicious. (A certain very funny kid may or may not have quipped: ‘Hey, my head is full of that!’) The feeling in the studio is one of joy and excitement, and the cast we have in place is nothing less than demigodly.
The new “Percy Jackson” series is geared towards a general audience and especially tweens, teens, and young adults, the live action series tells the fantastical story of a 12-year-old modern demigod, Percy Jackson, who’s just coming to terms with his newfound supernatural powers when the sky god Zeus accuses him of stealing his master lightning bolt. Now Percy must trek across America to find it and restore order to Olympus.
Rick Riordan also shared an update on his own experience following his first week working full time in Vancouver on the new series.
Unless you work in the industry, you would not believe how many people it takes to create a television show. Several times a day, we will be sitting in a board room with twenty folks, with half a dozen more joining on Zoom, just to figure out how to film a five-minute sequence in one episode. What cameras do we use? What stunts are required? What equipment do we need? What is CGI and what will be live? Fortunately, I don’t have to know all those answers. We have an A+ team of experts doing the math and physics behind getting these scenes right. I am there for ‘big picture’ stuff: How should it feel? How was it done in the books? How are the characters reacting? That kind of stuff. It has been a special thrill watching our director James Bobin lead this amazing production. His vision and his sense of humor are perfect for Percy Jackson. I also got to tag along on a scouting visit this week, where we all climb aboard a shuttle bus and investigate sites around the Greater Vancouver area that might be used in the filming of the series. I can’t tell you exactly where we went, but if you want a hint, re-read the chapter “A God Buys us Cheeseburgers” in The Lightning Thief.
Rick Riordan and Jon Steinberg will serve as writers of the pilot, and James Bobin will direct. Steinberg will oversee the series with his producing partner Dan Shotz. Steinberg and Shotz serve as executive producers alongside Bobin, Riordan, Rebecca Riordan, Bert Salke, Monica Owusu-Breen, Jim Rowe, Anders Engström, Jet Wilkinson and The Gotham Group’s Ellen Goldsmith-Vein, Jeremy Bell and D.J. Goldberg.
Are you looking forward to the new “Percy Jackson” Disney+ series?