The world of demigods and Greek mythology is coming to Disney+. Development on a Percy Jackson and the Olympians streaming series has been active at the house of mouse for years now, as author Rick Riordan first confirmed that a serialized reboot was on its way in May 2020. Since then, the project has brought on directorial talent like James Bobin (Alice Through the Looking Glass), cast its leading man in Walker Scobell (The Adam Project), and started its eight-month production shoot in Vancouver. Specifics regarding the first season remain close to the vest, although fans know it will follow the events of Riordan’s first installment in the books series, Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief.
That said, it does not mean Disney+’s take is going to be a beat-by-beat adaptation. Producer Becky Riordan confirmed that at least one “non-book scene” is being created for the streaming series.
“Filming a non-book scene today I helped create that improves story logic,” Becky wrote.
Becky continued the tweet by address recently Percy Jackson set photos that have surfaced, which included Scobell in a faithful orange Camp Half-Blood tee.
“Spoilers, some of you thought there was some judgment. I don’t mind spoilers but please tag your posts so people can decide,” Becky continued. “In [Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada] or not, please respect our employees on and off set and our work spaces.”
Filming a non-book scene today I helped create that improves story logic. #Spoilers, some of you thought there was some judgement. I don’t mind spoilers but please tag your posts so people can decide. In BC or not, please respect our employees on and off set and our work spaces💙
— Becky Riordan (@camphalfblood) August 8, 2022
While original scenes and Percy Jackson have not always been the best combination, as the 2010 film adaptation took significant liberties with the source material, fans can rest easy that this particular moment is being developed in collaboration with Becky herself. On top of that, it comes with a purpose. Bringing books to the big screen is always a tricky matter, as creators want to be true to the text while simultaneously leaving their own unique stamp on it. This “non-book scene” is not being created for the sake of being different, but rather because it boosts the story itself.
Going further, some of the best scenes from fellow popular young adult franchises were absent from their written counterpart. Harry Potter’s iconic “how dare you stand where he stood!” confrontation of Severus Snape in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 is unique to the final chapter in the wizarding world’s first franchise, as the book version has no such scene.
As for what Percy Jackson‘s “non-book scene” will be, speculation is anyone’s guess. The series has the privilege of telling the events of The Lightning Thief over the course of eight episodes, which gives it significantly more time than a typical feature film. That said, some chapters from the book will inevitably be trimmed or cut altogether to fit the confines of a streaming series. As Rick has stressed before, books and scripts are far from mirror images of one another.
“I review a new version of episode 102 from [showrunner] Jon [Steinberg], make some suggested tweaks, and send them back. We are constantly revising every episode, trying to capture that Percy tone and voice,” Rick wrote in a March blog update on his website. “I am sure we will be revising right up until the moment the lines are filmed, and maybe even after ! Just like with a novel, the script-writing work is never really ‘done.’ It’s just ‘due.'”
Percy Jackson and the Olympians is currently filming both on-location and with a custom StageCraft in Vancouver.