The White Witch returns to the big screen, again.


Aslan may have killed her in the first Narnia movie, but that hasn’t stopped the White Witch from showing up in all of the sequels. First some dissident Narnians tried to bring her back from the dead in Prince Caspian. Then, a few weeks ago, her face showed up on the newest display ad for The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. And now, reports The Torch Online, the possibility that she might have a role, however small, in all of the remaining sequels is “under consideration.” (Within the original novels, she appeared in only one of the six sequels, namely The Magician’s Nephew, and that one hasn’t been turned into a film yet.)

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader doesn’t come to theatres until December, and the first trailer won’t premiere online until tomorrow night, so if you’re wondering just what the White Witch is doing in this latest installment of the franchise, there isn’t a lot of information to go by just yet. But for what it’s worth, executive producer Perry Moore tells The Torch Online, cryptically: “She appears right where you think she would when you read the book — in a surprising way you could never guess that is at the same time true to the core of the book.” So we’d “think” it but we’d never “guess” it? How does that work? Meanwhile, Paul Martin at Narnia Fans says the White Witch will return “for a dream sequence and nothing more,” and that her appearance in the current sequel will likely be “shorter” than it was in the previous sequel.

About Peter T. Chattaway

Peter T. Chattaway was the regular film critic for BC Christian News from 1992 to 2011. In addition to his film column, which won multiple awards from the Evangelical Press Association, the Canadian Church Press and the Fellowship of Christian Newspapers, his news and opinion pieces have appeared in such publications as Books & Culture, Christianity Today, Bible Review and the Vancouver Sun. He also contributed essays to the books Re-Viewing The Passion: Mel Gibson’s Film and Its Critics (Palgrave Macmillan, 2004) and Scandalizing Jesus?: Kazantzakis’s The Last Temptation of Christ Fifty Years on (Continuum, 2005).

  • http://www.professorwhimsey.com victor

    What makes even more weird is that "The Magician's Nephew" wasn't really so much sequel to other books as it was a prequel (so it'd make sense to have the White Witch in it, as she hand't been killed off just yet).

    Someone needs to explain to the filmmakers that the White Witch doesn't serve the same dramatic or allegorical role that other "white" resurrectees such as Obi Wan and Gandalf serve.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07395937367596387523 Peter T Chattaway

    For what it's worth, "prequels" are, technically speaking, a subset of "sequels"; that is to say, a prequel is a sequel that takes place before an existing story rather than after it, but it is still a follow-up to an existing story, just like a regular sequel is.

    In addition, Merriam-Webster indicates that the word "prequel" didn't enter the language until the 1970s, or about a decade after C.S. Lewis died (and nearly two decades after the Narnia books came out). So The Magician's Nephew would presumably not have been called a "prequel", per se, at the time of its publication.

  • http://www.professorwhimsey.com victor

    Point taken on the prequel/sequel convention. What makes matters more confusing is that Narnia box sets today put the Magician's Nephew sequentially before TLTWATW so if you're buying a new copy and reading them again after 25 years, you go "Whoa. I don't remember this being the first book?".

    I was thinking more in terms of the story. Since obviously anything written by Lewis would be canon, and he intended TMN to be before TLTWATW (as evinced by the order of the box sets), I suppose we should respect his intended narrative timeline.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11340006144797496514 RC

    Peter, I love your sequel "chime in" – nice!

    So wise, so wise.

    On that note, I'd love to see the Magician's Nephew made…

    On another side note, I have NO IDEA how they'd incorporate the White Which into Horse & His Boy if they ever made this one (which I don't think they will).


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