SHANNARA On MTV: Arion, Bandon, Catania Cast

Variety has announced a few things!

The Hollywood news outlet reports that the TV series will be titled The Shannara Chronicles! And in bigger news, three characters have been cast and announced—one you know and two you do not but will soon enough!

Here is more information about them from the Variety article:

Brooke Williams will play Catania, a witty and wise Elf who is not only the handmaiden to Amberle (Poppy Drayton) but her trusted best friend in the palace.

Daniel MacPherson will portray Arion, the heir to the Elvin throne. Arion takes himself very seriously and is the opposite of his wilder brother Ander. He has spent his entire life trying to show his father that he is worthy of the crown, and he’s ready to take over, but when his niece Amberle goes missing, his plans become complicated.

Marcus Vanco will appear as Bandon. Feared by his family for his mysterious visions, Bandon is discovered by Wil (Austin Butler) and Amberle starving and chained to a wall. Allanon (Manu Bennett) takes special interest in him, believing his abilities will be integral in saving the Four Lands.

Brooke Williams has been in a number of TV series including Spartacus: Gods of the Arena and Spartacus: War of the Damned as well as another fantasy TV series that will remain nameless. Daniel McPherson has also done a lot of TV work, including Neighbors and Wild Boys. When I asked him if he was prepared to play a real jerk on The Shannara Chronicles, he said, “I was born to play Arion.” Then we both laughed. And Marcus Vanco played Lambert in the Angelina Jolie-directed movie Unbroken.

Some of you will have read the information above about these characters in the show and will undoubtedly be worried. Arion’s brother Ander being “wild?” And two characters who are not in The Elfstones of Shannara? These are departures from the book, to be sure. But they are also departures that Terry helped create and fully endorses. These changes work and help adapt Elfstones to a different medium to strengthen the TV series.

What do you think about all of this?

More casting news soon! Stay tuned!

135 responses to “SHANNARA On MTV: Arion, Bandon, Catania Cast”

  1. My only concern is the name they decided for the show. “Chronicles” just makes me think of another, lesser, fantasy story. I think that could be better but i have faith that the story will stand apart and be greater than any name they give the TV Series.

  2. I think these extra characters are going to piss off a lot of Shannara devotees, me included. Further, naming the stories “The Shannara Chronicles” sounds ridiculous. Why such a departure from the original text(s)? They don’t NEED to be changed by studio executives. The original stories stand all on their own perfectly and do NOT need to be re-adapted.

    My disappointment levels are starting to rise with this project.

    • Thank you!! Exactly! They are butchering a great story that can certainly hold its owwn in its original and true version. This is turning into The Great Disappointment.

      • It’s original version is a book. Books and tv series are different mediums requiring different things. A paint by the numbers adaptation would suck because of those medium problems. Take heart that Terry is involved and approves. NO ONE is more critical than him.

          • No matter how many times I hear a question, I keep in mind that — for that person — it’s the first time they’ve wondered it. Otherwise, I would go insane. haha

        • If they kept the original story completely intact for the show there will be plenty of scenes with Wil arguing with himself in his head about the elfstones don’t work for him and how allanon was wrong to choose him for this task.

          and then you would have to change the title of show to “the crazy people Shannara”

          Regardless, there will always have to be adaptations to a book turning into a medium like television or movies. Some times you need to spice up a scene with more action to prevent too long of a lull in the story (because watching something is less involving than imagining something you are reading and therefore you need to keep engaging the viewer or they zone out and the best way to do that is with action or shock)

          and sometimes the best way to transfer an internal monologue that is important to the story is by having another character just say it. But some times you don’t want one of the main characters to be saying those things as it may mess with character dynamics.

          so to get around that you can create a character. Which means they are not bounded by what was written in the book

      • I’m with you Remmy and Sheree. Once again the Hollywood machine making unnecessary changes to a great book. Just WHY?

        • I kinda get what Shawn is saying. There has to be a way to create a visual version of a character’s ‘internal monologue’ delivered via text. A foil character (actor) would accomplish that.

          • Thank you, Remmy. I don’t mind answering questions that pop up in this magnitude because usually I bring a different perspective that hasn’t been thought of before. I do marvel at your ability to say in three sentences what took me three paragraphs. 🙂

      • I agree,100 percent,I read George R R Martin for many years, seen 10 mins. of the TV series, and haven’t read anything by him since, ruined the whole thing’. Terry one of my all time favourites, so I may avoid the TV for a while.

  3. Sorry, but adding characters that are not in the books makes me think of the desecration that Peter Jackson wrought on the Hobbit. Our only hope is that Terry is very involved in this.

  4. The name is cringe-worthy but it’s just a name. I’m more concerned with adding characters and changing the storyline. Elfstones is the most tightly written book in the series, IMO, and shouldn’t need such drastic changes. If they are going to do this to Elfstones, what would they do in followup seasons to other books?

    I keep my hopes up for seeing a great product in the end and will be glad to see it in any form.

  5. It seems to me that Terry is very excited and up on whats happening and with that, It seems that whatever he assists with or approved, will make sense and only make things better. I am personally looking forward to this series adaptation. We all must just stick with the montage that “Sometimes the Magic Works”.

    • I trust Mr. Brooks… if he is okay with and involved with the changes, then I trust that in the end it will help the transition to the screen. I was okay with what Jackson did with LOTR, and I trust Terry to make this worth the effort to watch! 🙂

  6. If it’s going to ruin your day that much stick to the books. No one is forcing you can I watch it.

      • If it does become released on dvd/ blu ray, and if there are thoughts to make a 3d version maybe it could be released at the same time instead of much later, as I wonder with game of thrones, hope they will because id really like to see it, but also, already have seasons 1-3 purchased and buying it all over is not appealing.

  7. I like the title. It shows to me a hopeful promise of the storyline going beyond just the Elfstones book (Wishsong perhaps). As for the changes from the original text, I will look at it as I always do when a book becomes film/TV: A book is not a screen play. Many adaptations are typically needed to both condense time and increase audience.

  8. if Terry helped create these new characters for the TV adaptation, I think it’s awesome. it is his story by the way. he has the creative authority and right to add to his own creation if he chooses to, I respect that 🙂

    the title change however….meh.

  9. The title change makes complete sense. If they wish to continue the series with another story line, they don’t want to be forced to change the name of the show every year.

  10. Teensy bit disappointed that there’s been no mention of casting for Uncle Flick. I can imagine him being one of those details that gets dropped for space/time.

    As soon as I saw new characters I thought one of them could be the changeling demon in disguise, particularly the woman, if the character is only going to be in an episode or two. I am really wondering how the demons are going to be handled on the show.

    • They may make Uncle flick last as he doesn’t have many scenes, but like you said he may just be removed as that would be easiest answer to a problem they will have to address if they do cast him on elfstones

      which is will we make Sword of Shannara and will this actor be flick in the prequel season

      • Oh they must keep Flick!! He is one of my favorite characters. They can build all kinds of scenes around him. It would like having Frodo with no Samwise.

        • yes Frodo to Samwise would be right if the first season of SC was Sword of Shannara

          In Elfstones however he can easily be omitted and it may be safer to do so if they have any chance to go back and revisit Sword.

  11. Is that name change actually confirmed yet? Cos if not I think that some fellow fans may be concerned about nothing…. As for the character additions, i think that it’ll only serve to strengthen the series, especially if terry created them. As long as the directors don’t force him to stray too far from the original content, like the nameless fantasy series that was mentioned, then it’s still gonna be awesome!!

    • Looks to be true. Go to sonar entertainments website. It’s not that big of a deal, it used to upset me at first when i’d see all the weirdness with mtv and such. But Shawn’s faith in Terry has changed my mind. I snoop the web every day for info, true or not, and now I just enjoy watching people get as mad or excited as I did. It’s blowing up now and I love it.

  12. So they create a title to encompass all of the Shannara books rather than a small section or even a single book, although I think the name is a little naff I personally can’t think of many better that does the job. And as for new characters erm so what, I think if they help to help bridge different stories and connect characters into something more fluidic for television purposes then great if it enhances the whole of the series then I am all for it 🙂

  13. Shawn, I fully understand that changes are necessary because the two mediums are different, and I’m fine with that, however, new characters and new plot lines are not necessary changes. You are being disingenuous in trying to defend these things that have nothing to do with the book. Each time I read current news about the show, I find that more and more liberties are being taken with the book. I know that no matter what further liberties they decide to take, you will always try to put a positive spin on it, but enough of this BS. The more they stray from the book, the more Shannara fans will stray from the show. Terry should be a better guardian of his books.

    • If you don’t trust Terry in maintaining the integrity of one of his “children,” and you think you know more than he does, then don’t watch it. Pretty simple. You have that choice. I trust Terry. It’s not about spinning: I actually trust him and his role in all of this.

      The two mediums are not the same and sometimes that requires extra characters. You sound like someone who would be pissed that Wil shows up in the first episode. If that’s the case, I bid you cheers.

      • First off, I never said that I think I know more than Terry does, I said he should be a better guardian of his books. I’ve been coming to this website for years and have read Terry’s various comments during former possible movie deals and scripts in the past and his basic attitude has always been that once he sells the rights, it’s out of his hands when it comes to this kind of stuff. In September Terry said: “Your faithful author is weathering the bitter winds of those living south in La La Land who keep insisting on reinventing the wheel. So far, I am holding my own, but I make no guarantees that they won’t plow me under.” I’ll tell you how to weather the bitter winds and guarantee that you won’t be plowed under. You have it stipulated, as a condition of the contract (e.g. no new characters, no new plot lines, and author reserves the right to maintain the integrity of his works, etc…) It’s called negotiating. Oh well, I guess as usual, it’s out of Terry’s hands now, or maybe it was just the right amount of money to let one of his “children” go.

        • I don’t think you understand. In this deal, Terry has complete control unheard of for authors in Hollywood. He wants the changes — even wishes for a few of them that he had created them for the book. No one is forcing him to do anything he doesn’t want. He’s more protective about his work than you are giving him credit for.

          • If Terry has complete control unheard of for authors in Hollywood, and no one is forcing him to do anything he doesn’t want, then why does he make no guarantees that they won’t plow him under? Doesn’t sound like much control to me.

          • The quote you are using was about the Landover movie, a separate deal from Shannara. We’ve had three screenwriters on Landover so far and so far all of them keep changing the story — drastically in some instances. In that deal, Terry has no control but just enough respect to ask for another rewrite until he is satisfied. Make sense now?

    • Again, I reiterate, the two medium are different. Just as a hypothetical to answer why changes are necessary, a handmaiden in Arborlon for Amberle’s return — someone she trusts — allows an interaction between the two that allows the TV viewer to understand Amberle’s choices better. That can’t exist without her talking to someone because, in the book, we are in the heads of characters. TV isn’t a medium you can do that.

      Hopefully this illustrates how additional characters CAN be a boon for the TV medium and why they are necessary. Cheers.

      • OK Shawn, let’s go with your premise that additional characters are required to make the “medium” work as compared to a literal scripting of the text. Fine. Then answer me this: ‘Elfstones’ was ostensibly chosen as the first movie because 1. it was too similar to LOTR (I disagree here, but nevertheless…), and 2. IT DIDN’T HAVE ANY FEMALE CHARACTERS IN IT which was thought to result in the alienation of female viewers.

        If that’s true, then that simple problem could have been easily solved by, let’s see… ADDING FEMALE CHARACTERS.

        The logic doesn’t seem to hold water. If writing in additional characters solves continuity/plot problems, then I’d offer that starting this series with ‘Sword’ would have been a better choice in keeping with the expressed wishes of the series’ loyal fans, and it would have avoided the time discontinuity mistake that plagued the ‘Star Wars’ franchise by starting ITS story at book 4.

        Just sayin’.

        • Remmy, you are actually talking about two very different things. So I’ll try to address both from my own point of view.

          The main reason that Terry picked Elfstones was because of Sword‘s first half being plot-point-by-plot-point similar to Fellowship of the Ring. It takes half the book to deviate from Tolkien’s work—once Flick separates from his Frodo and once that Frodo comes across a very original Creel and Keltset—and giving critics and audiences unfamiliar with Terry’s work half of a story to become its own would have been TV suicide. The series would die a quick death at that point. We can talk all day long about how similar the two stories are, but that really isn’t important for the heart of your real question.

          Storytelling is a complicated thing. When it comes to characters, there are primary, secondary, and tertiary characters. Hell, there is even a fourth level when a character is just mentioned and never seen. But let’s focus on the three.

          Sword has no primary female character. Not one. Shirl is the only female character and she is a tertiary character—a character that motivates another character but doesn’t add or change the story. Elfstones, on the other hand, has two primary female characters (Eretria can kind of be considered a secondary but her actions speak primary).

          Now, look at what’s important for adapting a book into a story. The most important thing is to maintain the integrity of the overall storyline with primary characters. In this case, the only way to give Sword a primary female character would be to change the gender of Shea, or Flick, or Allanon or even Menion. Adding secondary or tertiary female characters to Sword doesn’t satisfy the “alienation of female viewers.” The only way that happens is if a primary character is female. Sword doesn’t have that unless you severely alter the story.

          Altering a story at the primary level is a difficult thing. It can easily collapse the integrity of the story, destroying something that works in book form. Try putting a primary female character in Sword. What’s her role? What does she do? How does she affect the overall outcome of the larger story? And how do you stop her actions from ruining the already established primary characters’ story arcs? It’s a great deal more work to add a new primary character, work that alters the story anyway. So why do it?

          Elfstones has two female primary characters though. It’s already set up. It’s right there for adapting, easily accessible, not needing any work. And by adding a few secondary and tertiary characters to Elfstones, it smooths out the problems of adapting a story into a new medium.

          In short, it is far easier to not screw with a story at the primary character level than at a secondary or tertiary level.

          • @Shawn, thanks for your reply. That makes sense. I can’t imagine a female Keltset, can you?!! (Maybe Rosanne Barr…???)

          • I will have Terry write up a blog post about everything I just said and why there will be three or four characters added to the adaptation. He’ll be able to speak more eloquently about it since he’s Terry. 🙂

          • Shawn, that was very well put. I wish Peter Jackson had read that before inventing a female elf and totally destroying Tolkien’s work in the Hobbit.

          • I understand why Jackson introduced Tauriel, for the reasons I’ve already said in this thread (the need for a strong female character to even out the movie and its audiences). But I think Jackson just went about it wrong. It’s the same reason he increased Arwen’s presence in LOTR.

          • I understand the thought process of having a female. I will add, however, that my daughter hates Tauriel with a passion. She disagrees strongly that she was needed and so many other things that should have been in the movies were left out so we could have Tauriel.

          • And if Tauriel didn’t exist, you’d have a large group of people screaming that there were no female characters in three movies. So not everyone is going to be happy. 🙂

            That’s why I tell people who are worried about SHANNARA to take a deep breath and at least watch the first episode before casting stones. Watch and see if it is good. If it isn’t, then hate it. And not watch it again. If you like it, TELL people you like it. It’s that way we grow viewership and try to eventually get to my favorite stories in HERITAGE. haha

          • I am not as worried about Shannara knowing that Terry is involved and having read your comments. But I will say I think Jackson destroyed the Hobbit but that is a discussion for another day.

          • Great debate guys, I enjoyed reading both points of view. I will add that “The Hobbit” was largely a children’s tale and needed quite a bit of embellishment to make an entertaining movie. The addition of Tauriel didn’t bother me one bit. I was also expecting, and pleased, when they added back story only available in the Silmarillion and other Tolkein works.

            I also completely understand the need for “new” characters to help convey the primary characters feelings to the audience. The only way to do this the same way a book does would be to have first person narration in every episode, which has been done before, but wouldn’t work here. As long as the changes being made are deemed necessary by those who know more than me, I’m happy. I just think us fans of the books don’t want to see change for the sake of change, as we love the story the way it is.

      • That really does make a lot of sense, and I hope that is how catania is used, but I really loved in the book how isolated and desperately confused Amberle was. It made learning and understanding her a much more intimate thing for both wil and the readers.
        One thing that would really creep me out tho, is if she’s mainly there to be ander or arion’s romantic interest. Cause in the book aren’t both princes about 40 years old? A 16 year old maiden prolly shouldn’t be what they’re looking for

          • I meant the hand maiden. And I do recognize that in the show, the princes are not 40 something. I may sound a little prickly when it comes to the seeming changes to ander, cause I thought he was real great in the books. Its my opinion. But I fo really look forward to how he turns out in the tv series.

          • That’s fine. But in my opinion, Ander of the book is BORING for a TV series since we can’t be inside his head. It is a better character arc if he has little responsibility and squanders it — to eventually evolve into the King of the Elves and the greatest responsibility a person can have. I see why the change is necessary.

        • Oh, and that’s nice about Amberle feeling isolated and confused. But if she has no one to share that with on the screen, the viewer isn’t going to know that. This isn’t a book where we can get into someone’s head. This is TV where that is impossible unless the character is given voice to another character — Catania in this instance as a confidante.

          • I already said that that makes alot of sense. And how I hope that it works out like that for the character catania in the tv series.

            I also just wanted to express my positive feelings for the way that amberle was written and portrayed in the book.

    • We all forget Elfstones follows Sword so there has to be changes for the new to Shannara viewers, as there needs to be in fill for people who haven’t read Sword, and if Terry is involved I don,t see the problem. Lets not pre judge, and judge the final product

      • Elfstones is a self-contained story. And even if there is a need for the “fill” you are talking about, a line of dialog between Wil and Allanon about Shea and his Elfstones and a line of dialog between Allanon and Eventine about their past relationship is all that is needed to elude to what has come before.

  14. As long as Mr. Brooks created the characters I’m sure there is nothing to worry about. Look at The Walking Dead, the character of Darryl Dixon was created for the T.V. show and he is the most popular character.

  15. a bit surprised about the additions of so many other characters but i’m sure that will become more clear in time. really excited for manu bennet’s allanon. it will all work out in the end or it won’t. name makes sense as Tales of Shannara doesn’t really work for a TV show. is eflstones going to be over multiple seasons or just one series?

  16. As TLOTR did with the movies, staying true to the books, caricatures and vision of Tolkin so should my most beloved Shannara. I trust Terry and love all of his work but will he really have controle? Sounds like he is letting others rework his stories to “work” on TV, if they can do LOTR & Game of Thrones by the book, they can do Terry’s deserving work. Did you see what they did to “the Dresdin files”? Don’t let that happen, please …

      • That will be great!! I am so looking forward to it, just want the MTV people to do as good of a job as the Game of Thrones people have

    • Did you read some screen adaptation book of LOTR and GoT
      because the original books are very different then what you see in screen

      It’s hard to take you guys seriously when your posts are filled with incorrect facts and I know Shawn is just too polite to call some of you guys out but a lot of hate post all scream out how illogical something is when their own use of logic is the illogical one

      back to this OP the dresdin files was a mess

  17. Personally, I feel that this show will be great! Books will always be better that a television/movie adaptation… there’s no way around it. Terry is a phenomenal story teller and the stories he has written only get that much better because of your imagination. It’ll just be great to see his characters brought to life! To finally see the world that we all have read about…. all the colors, darkness, heroism and treachery right there in front of your eyes! I’m sure that it’ll captivate even those who have not read the series.

  18. im so excited i have read all of Terrys books since i was a kid all i have to say is its about damn time they did a tv or movie out of his story’s because they are fantastic.

  19. I already have bad feelings about the use of Shannara Chronicles! And while new characters are to be expected (following Peter Jackson’s Bible on LOTR & Hobbit) it doesn’t look good if they take a central role in the story! Elfstones should be about Will and Amberele! And MTV only ordered like 12 episodes for the first season! That’s not a lot of time to introduce the main cast of Allanon, Will, and Amberele! And then new characters created on the set the day of filming… or in pre-production! Although as a fan, I am thrill at-the opporitunity to see Shannara on the screen! (Wheel of Time by Robert Jordon did not fair well of FX last night when it premered to bad ratings!) Best Wishes Terry!

    • There are no characters being added that are central characters like Wil, Amberle, Eretria, Allanon. The characters being added are secondary and tertiary characters.

    • if you cannot introduce your main characters within 10 episodes of roughly 1 hour of film im sure you are doing something wrong.

      Lotr did it in 3 hours and most movies do it within 2 hours.

      Don’t worry i don’t think Catania will snatch away with the ellcrys seed and run off to find the bloodfire in amberle’s place.
      Their introduction will probably be quick and seamless since they are not main characters.

  20. I think the show should be called “Terry Brook’s World of Shannara”. This would attract all his fans who do not pay attention as closely as others but still like him and what he writes and would be a great lead in to each episode if he introduced them. Sort of a Rod Serling type before Night Gallery and the Twilight Zone. Only not dark like that. Also it would be great because he is the “father” of a whole new generation of Fantasy lovers.

  21. With Terry right there on set, they will do a great job. All adaptations have extra characters, and some of them end up being just a loved as the ones from the books.
    I have loved these stories for 30+ years, and cannot wait to see them come to lifeEE

  22. Now this is interesting! I’ve been wondering about the new characters & it’s nice to know who two, at least, of them will be.

    I like the Shannara Chronicles, if that is indeed going to be the name. Like LRB said, it leaves the door open for further books to be adapted.

    Eric Upchurch–I wouldn’t be too worried about the Wheel of Time premiere. It was aired in the middle of the night and, by all accounts, hastily made. I don’t think either is going to apply to Elfstones.

        • She didn’t know that the pilot was going to be released. But you can bet your knickers that she knew Robert Jordan and his estate had signed a contract to make the pilot/TV show. And got paid for it.

          Unfortunately, she was likely hoping to get the rights back to re-sell them again. And the pilot being made and aired a few days before the rights reverted made her very upset. And rightly so. The quality was not good.

  23. I am good with some new characters, as long as Terry fleshes them out. I know this is not the book itself. Like the LOTR movies, some things get tweaked, as long as the meat it there and the depth of quality is in tact. I will be fine with a few new twists.

  24. Like others, I trust Terry’s role in bringing the best possible adaptations of his works to this new television series. I also understand what Shawn says about bringing new characters into the series to make the best use of the medium. That being said, the introduction of this Catania to the series is curious. (POSSIBLE SPOILERS AHEAD) For those who have read Elfstones, we know that at the start of the book, Amberle is not in the palace, haven given up her life as a Chosen and disgracing her family, she is in a neighboring village caring for children. And she really is not in the palace long enough other than to visit the Ellcrys and her Grandfather, Eventine, before she is off to find the Bloodfire with Wil. I like the actress though they have chosen to play this Catania, like Poppy, she has an Elvish look of beauty about her. Still waiting anxiously for casting news on Stee Jans, Crispin, and Cephalo.

    • In the book, we get a sense of what Amberle is feeling. But on screen, it’s impossible to know unless you give her someone to talk to. That is why Catania is super important. Amberle is not going to open up her feelings to Allanon or Eventine or Ander or Arion or even the Ellcrys.

      Enter Catania. A secondary character that helps strengthen Amberle’s character by being able to interact with her. The TV audience needs a Catania to get at the heart of Amberle through on screen dialog.

    • Yes Amberle isn’t anywhere near the palace and hasn’t been for some time but what i found curious was in the description of Arion it says something like

      But when he finds out that his niece goes missing that it changes his direction.

      in the book i wouldn’t think they would call her ‘missing’ as OP points out she leaves and disgraces her family. and I thought arion didn’t want anything to do with her and only Ander was open to the idea of Amberle resuming her role as a chosen one.

      Im curious to see if they change the origin of Amberle’s predicament

  25. Ive got all the books and re read them heaps, cant wait to watch it. Everyone that reads the books is going to critisise the show, but as some people have already said they have to adapt for tv or film. The name is good i reckon, extra characters?? well cant say much till i see it but if Terry says its good well….. cant complain really. As long as we get to see the demon ripping apart a couple of the elven hunters lol

    • It’s easier to enjoy the process and just accept there is nothing any one fan can change by bitching and starting a comment riot. (Better for my blood pressure as well) This has been a lot of fun to watch come together. I also am excited to see some Reaper carnage!

        • Oh can’t wait for this scene (spoiler but trying to keep it vague)

          Where the reaper edges closer and the pins are all let loose
          but nothing happens. Then Amberle gasp in horror as all their effort was for naught. But little did she know she had whispered the Secret word of the day

          The reaper starts to scream and jump around jarring the rust and releasing the . . .

  26. Shawn,

    Thanks for the updates and clarifications. Also, thanks for your perseverance and and patience. Especially the patience! I couldn’t even get through all the posts without getting aggravated!

    You’re very good at your job. 😉
    Keep it up!

    • Krissy, I was thinking the same thing. Shawn, you are doing an amazing job. If everyone keeps hating and Shawn has to deal with it we may as well just cast him as The Reaper.

  27. Shannara (still can’t wait to hear how they pronouce it) Chronicles makes sense. Even if people will think of Narnia. It gives the show an ability to jump 20 years in the next season and not worry about what they call it. Think Game Of Thrones not using the book titles for each season.

    As far as additions, etc…it may sound like shawn is spinning it and only time will tell if that’s true but if you look at GOT they omit characters and give it to a minor character to save money and time. Instead of having three characters that don’t do a lot lets make it one character and give that character more depth and speed things up. Now I never agreed with the addition to the Ros character as I wish the time would have been spent on someone else but look at Bronn. I love what they did with him and gave him a bigger part in the show vs. the book.

    I don’t mean to pimp GOT but that’s the best comparison out there for a successful book transfered to television format.

  28. So since Brandon has visions does that make him a seer and possibly connect him to Ryer Ord Star or even The Addershag?!!!?

  29. Shawn don’t feed the trolls too much, you’ll go crazy!

    Everyone needs to reserve judgement until the show is out. I’m very excited to see what is in store.

    • I love it when someone doesn’t agree with another person’s opinion online so they call them a troll. I would be willing to bet you comment on blogs more than half the people who have had something negative to say about all of this. Stop reading blogs because more than likely there will be something negative said about something you like.

  30. I’m super excited for the show and I’m going to watch it and support it and Most likely love it! But im surprised that no one has said anything about thinking that they’re creating characters just so that they can have more romantic relationships. And maybe even more love triangles. I feel like this is the case. And I don’t think it’s a good enough reason, but who knows how it’ll turn out? maybe when I watch the show I’ll end up being on team jacob, I mean bandon, instead of on the traditional team edward, I mean wil 😉

      • I probably should have left my random love triangle thought out and my bad twilight joke out, because my main thing is I’m pretty sure that romance is a big factor in creating these characters. Which I’m really OK with because I’m a big romantic, and when I was younger, I used to really wonder why Terry Brooks’s books weren’t more potent with them. Seeing a romantic relationship between two characters can really make you more invested in the characters. and it doesn’t just have to be about love either. Cause I can think of a couple of scenes that could be real dynamic with some more comrades in it. Specifically when the two witch sisters are fighting. It would be much more of an experience if more than just wil, amberle and eretria (and was there some old wood carving man too?) Were there.

        Mainly I was just wondering if I was the only person thinking that the show people were adding these characters in for the romance aspect, and I was surprised that in this long comments section, no one had said anything similar to that yet

        • Elfstones already has a love triangle with its main characters

          introducing more characters just to encroach on the same characters would be a bad idea.

          first off love triangles can be a little tricky because you want the audience to feel the pull for both sides but you also might want to have a certain winner so you can write with it in mind.

          But unfortunately usually one wins out and one part of the fan populace will not like it.

          Given you will already have that issue in elfstones with the new “never read the book” viewers. To muddy the waters more and add another triangle and possibly over shadowing wil as a favorite would really hurt the original story and possibly rating if for some reason they prefer the new character to the original.

          Take the tv series Arrow
          Green arrow and black canary in the comics are known to be an item couple and in the tv show they didn’t want them getting together right away as most shows do but in the process of deflecting the relationship other interest come and become loved.

          in arrow there is a big following for arrow and felicity (nerd analysis sidekick) and the chemistry is really good with those actors and not with the main storied interest.

          well now you have a big group of your rating wanting something that would change the story that you wanted to lay out.
          Cater to the fans wants and deal with the end later or stand ground and possibly lose ratings and end the show before you can reach the ending you wanted to tell.

          More headaches than im sure they want and this is only a 10 episode season it will probably all be etched in stone already by the time the season starts and if you piss potential fans off they will leave because they will know next season will have nothing to do with these characters, it will be final. (unlike arrow where there is a possibility that next season or the next season after will turn it towards the way you want to see it so you keep watching)

          I for one cant wait to see the reactions (of the non book readers) when the end of the season happens.

  31. With Terry’s input I know the show will be great. I also have to commend Shawn for how he has responded to some of the response here. You do a great job and thank you for all that you do to help us fans stay informed.

  32. Accepting change is difficult. Accepting change to something as beloved as the Shannara saga is next to impossible. Nothing will please everyone. The name Shannara Chronicles is a good choice because the series will offer a new concept and perspective. Since it will not be exactly the same as the book, it should have its own title. I have been a fan since Sword was first published. If I can open my mind to the prospect of change, all the rest of you nay-sayers need to get over yourselves and let the story evolve. Terry knows what he is doing.

  33. Catania? Brandon? Here we go again, as if Elfstones didn’t have enough characters to draw from, we have to have BRANDON? WHY? Just why? I want to be in the room and understand why we need a BRANDON?

    • CORRECTION: BANDON. WHY DO WE NEED BANDON AND CATANIA?! Why cant we ever just stick with the source material? Ugh…..

      • Technically since Terry suggested adding them (from what I understand) to help with the transition in medium. Since he wrote the original books, I’d say that’s sticking pretty close to the source — after all, Shannara is Terry’s world, both written and unwritten, that he has elected to share with all of us. I think that it is only fair to give him credit for knowing the Shannara world better than any of us ever could, and I trust him completely. 🙂

        • It’s always, “as long as they stick to the spirit of the book”. Come on! Just once I want a FAITHFUL, meaning NO CHANGES!!!! Just once! People are always rationalizing these changes. Im tired of it. They even changes the ellesedils because it would be boring. BORING? Whatever…..

  34. Having just watched the strange, C- quality pilot for a Wheel of Time pilot, and even worse “What has this to do with the Hobbit?” 1966 Hobbit mini-film, NONE of the changes to Elfstones we’ve seen here look remotely significant.

    Terry loves his books, he is extremely gracious and respectful to his fans, and I’m fully confident the he will point MTV in a direction that produces a story true to the character of the book.

    Kim K. isn’t playing Allanona, filming isn’t occurring in the parking lot of a Renn fair, and JJ Abrahms isn’t involved. It’ll do fine.

  35. I just wanted to say thanks for the update! I love checking every day for any fresh news on the TV adaptation. 🙂 I am so beyond excited, and I am really glad to see (and hear) that Terry is so involved in this. I trust in him completely, and I can’t wait to watch Shannara on the screen at last! My dad and I have both been huge fans of all of Terry Brooks’ books, but especially the Shannara series.

  36. Keep Ms. Williams under contract to play Grianne if the series reaches as far as Voyage, and do I hope it does.

  37. Ok, everyone take a breather here, PLEASE! Shawn des his best to give us the information he know, but he does need to protect certain vital information that he may be privy to that he is not at liberty to disseminate to all of us faithful.

    :et us all take a cooler here and trust Mr. Brooks in what he is doing. If Shawn says that he knows what he is doing and that he has control, then lets give him the benefit of the doubt. I am certain that Shawn and Mr. Brooks have had these discussions as they are friends and actually know each other. We on the other hand are just the faithful that love his work and should believe that Mr. Brooks is not going to steer us down the wrong path. Let us respect him now as we have for the last 38 odd years.

    I have faith!

    • Let’s just say that I know things I wish I could talk about. But after 20 years of keeping Terry’s secrets, I’m not about to start breaking them now. 🙂

  38. Well said Shawn! I trust you. You wouldn’t steer us intentionally wrong. You have to be faithful. I respect that!

  39. I’ll echo other sentiments, not so worried about new characters if Terry is the one creating them.

    I am concerned about being able to actually watch the show, however. Our cable provider, Suddenlink, dropped Viacom networks last year and has no plans to bring them back. They weren’t the only ones, either. Is there going to be some other way to watch this show, like Hulu, Amazon or Netflix?

    Thanks and I’m midway through Dark Legacy, is Speakman named after you, Shawn?

    • I’m sure that there will be other ways to watch the TV series. When we know them, I’ll post them on the SHANNARA FAQ on the front page of the website.

      As for the Speakman, yes, that character is certainly named after me. A dubious honor that you’ll understand once to the end of the trilogy. haha

      • Okay, Shawn, I’m looking forward to it. This sorta reminds me of when I was reading Game of Thrones and I came across a reference to Grand Maester Rigney and his belief that everyone’s life is tied to a wheel.

    • I’m with you, Ron. I am on Suddenlink too and I seriously thought about dropping them because they dropped MTV. With Shannara on the horizon, I’m looking into other options (Hulu, Netflix, etc). It’s very frustrating but it is what it is. My back up plan is my bro-in-law has dish and can dvr it for me. : )

      Anyway, I’m looking forward to this show. I have been a long-time fan and can’t wait.

      • Yeah, it really irritates me, especially with Comedy Central and The Daily Show being something I regularly watched. True, I can watch those shows online, but I guess I’m getting to be too much of a geezer – prefer to watch my TV on the couch and not at my desk. Cheetos dust in the keyboard or on the iPad screen doesn’t sound like fun…

  40. Shawn you are really funny whenever you reply to the people who are complaining.
    I am so excited for the show, I trust Terry Brooks, and I am actually really excited for new characters I love Terry’s new characters in each book so I’m sure I will love these ones! I just finished reading The Elfstones again and I asked myself “How I am going to be able to watch the ending on screen?” Because it is hard for me to even read it without tearing up! I cant wait!!!!

    • Most of the complaints are from people who lack a bit of information and, after hearing the info, also change their minds. There are always going to be people who hate on something new or think they would know how to do it better. I try to ignore them. 🙂

  41. I’m very excited about this show being produced. Elfstones has always been my favorite of the series, and a great way to introduce people to Shannara. I’m also glad that this filming is happening in a time where the genre has been legitimized by a series like GoT. I was always worried about the ability to translate fantasy onto the screen without making it super hokie, and I think they can do it well these days.

    I can’t wait to see the first appearance of Eretria and the gypsy camp… Love that girl…

  42. Can’t wait! extra characters and all. I was a Junior in High School when “Sword” came out, in 77 it was the 1st book I ever bought with my own money. I still have it and
    ALL the rest. when it comes to creating characters, Terry’s the best. That’s what keeps me coming back. It would be hard to ruin a story like Elfstones with a few new characters, created and approved by the author himself. Granted if Amberle and Wil meet the Tinman…I’m done! However…why not just “SHANNARA” for the series name?
    Short, Sweet, leaves room for more & fits on a t-shirt. I know you don’t have any control over the title but feel free to forward this suggestion to the producers:)