- Percy Jackson & The Olympians series brings the Greek Underworld to life with a bleak monotone color scheme and a world turned upside down.
- The Underworld is ruled by Hades and Persephone and is a place where the dead are judged and face punishments for their deeds.
- The TV show’s depiction of the Underworld will be different from the 2010 movie adaptation, offering a more faithful and striking portrayal.
Percy Jackson & The Olympians production designer Dan Hennah teases how the show set about bringing the novel’s take on the Greek Underworld to life for the Disney+ series. The upcoming show is an adaptation of Rick Riordan’s series of novels centering on the modern-day children of the Greek God pantheon, and their many quests and odysseys in a world hidden beneath contemporary America. Percy Jackson & The Olympians season 1 will adapt the first novel of the initial series, 2005’s The Lightning Thief, which introduced Percy to his true heritage and search for Zeus’ fabled Master Bolt.
With Percy Jackson & The Olympians set to premiere on December 20, production designer Hennah discussed his work on the series with The Geeky Waffle, where he teased how the show approached bringing life to the Greek land of the dead. When describing the Underworld, the designer stated that the realm is the complete opposite of the real world and the heavens of Olympus, possessing a bleak monotone color scheme where the physics of the real world are completely upended. Check out Hennah’s full explanation below:
We decided to go with a very monotone, very white on gray, on gray, on black, on white world, and also his world is upside down. His palace is his form of Mount Olympus upside down. Also, just the concept of it being the underworld, so what’s up above? It’s not the sky up above; there’s actually mountains, and all that business is up there, and his world is down here. Then we have a layer people walk on, so gravity is being defied. So, lots of opportunities to do some really surreal stuff.
Percy Jackson & The Olympians‘ Underworld Is A Stark Take Compared To Previous Adaptations
Located beneath a recording studio in Los Angeles and accessible via an elevator attended by Charon, the Underworld is a domain ruled by Zeus’ (Lance Reddick) and Posseidon’s (Toby Stephens) Greek God sibling Hades (Jay Duplass), and his wife Persephone. The dead are judged by a selection of figures from history whether they may pass on in peace, be reborn, or be subjected to fitting but brutal punishments for their wicked deeds in life. In Percy Jackson & The Olympians season 1, Percy (Walker Scobell) and friends will head to the Underworld as part of their quest to find the bolt, bringing with it difficult scenarios for the heroes.
While the Underworld did feature in the original 2010 movie adaptation, Percy Jackson & The Lightning Thief, its depiction is a stark contrast to what Hennah has described Percy Jackson & The Olympians‘ Underworld will be. In the movie, the entrance to the Underworld is located behind the Hollywood sign, and a much more traditionally Hell-like depiction of the Afterlife, where a Heavy Metal-fan-inspired Hades played by Steve Coogan resides in a dysfunctional relationship with Rosario Dawson’s Persephone. While Riordan has promised a more faithful adaptation, it seems the TV show’s underworld still allowed the production team to have fun in imagining what comes next for all.
With Hennah’s bleak but striking description of Percy Jackson & The Olympians‘ Underworld, the show’s otherworldly setting is already set to stand out from other depictions in media. The series Camp Half-Blood set has already boasted incredible practical sets that brought the Demigod refuge to life. As such, Hennah’s tease is sure to leave some wondering how the team may have used practical and VFX to bring Hades’ realm from page to screen.
Source: The Geeky Waffle