With boy wizard Harry Potter's film franchise about to end next year, much-awaited Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief is being touted as the next hit fantasy-adventure movie series. Logan Lerman, 18, who plays Percy Jackson, admits he would love his film to be as successful as the Harry Potter wizard series.
"Do we want the movie to be as successful as Harry Potter (series)? Yeah, sure," said Logan during a webcast for the international media from Athens, Greece.
"Do we want it to be as loved? Yeah... But they are different movies. This is Greek mythology and that is wizardry; so they're completely different grounds as films, but popularity-wise, yeah, we want it to be just as popular," he added.
Also present during the chat were other cast members Brandon T. Jackson, 25, Alexandra Daddario, 23, and Jake Abel, 22. Apart from the four, the movie has an ensemble cast, including Catherine Keener, Uma Thurman, Pierce Brosnan, Sean Bean, Kevin McKidd, Steve Coogan, Rosario Dawson and Melina Kanakaredes.
Releasing Feb 11 in Australia, and the next day in the US and Britain, the film will hit Indian screens Feb 19. Distributed in the US by 20th Century Fox, it will be presented in India by Fox Star Studios India.
A big-screen adaptation of The Lightning Thief, the first novel in the Percy Jackson & The Olympians series by Rick Riordan, the film is directed by Chris Columbus who made the first three Harry Potter outings.
"It (Chris Columbus' works) is what attracted me to this project. He has shaped my childhood so much with Home Alone and Harry Potter films that I just wanted to be a part of another Chris Columbus creation. It was a dream," said Lerman.
Jackson, Lerman's co-star, added: "And the best thing about Chris is he's very good at collaborating. He's not a director that dictates. He's really good at just saying let's all make art together... He's very cool...He gets you to use your imagination."
Daddario admitted to having read the book before the script, as it was "top secret" according to Lerman, but the boys went through it only while filming or after it.
So do you need to know the book before watching the movie? "No. I don't think you really need to read the books to understand the plotline, especially because this is the first movie... it kind of explains everything for itself," said Lerman.
"The Lightning Thief" (2005) is the first of five books by Riordan. Till date, the series has spent 100 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list while in India, it has already sold more than 50,000 copies. The Lightning Thief has been licensed in over 30 languages.