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What You Should Know about The Shannara Chronicles

by Dave Elliott

The Shannara Chronicles is a new series starting next Thursday (25th Feb) at 9pm on 5STAR, so we thought it might be good to give you a bit of background about the show and it’s cast.

  • The series is based on the best-selling fantasy novels by Terry Brooks. The original trilogy started with The Sword of Shannara in 1977 and since then has expanded into 29 various novels, short stories, and even a graphic novel that carry on the original world.
  • Rather than being set in a fantasy land like Middle Earth, or a galaxy far far away, the Shannara series is set in a far future after the destruction of own world… That means Elven ancestors are living in our world right now… In this future Earth, technology has died out and elves are the ruling race. Magic had returned, but was subsequently removed in the ‘War Of The Races’, by locking it away in the ancient ‘Ellcrys’ tree, along with a bunch of pesky demons…
  • The show itself is set 300yrs after the ‘War Of The Races’, and centres on a half-human/half-elf named Wil (Austin Butler, The Carrie Diaries & Switched at Birth), an Elven princess named Amberle (Poppy Drayton), and a full human named Eretria (Ivana Baquero) who set out on a quest to save The Four Lands from a demon army.
  • Two of the main cast members are beloved actors in the fantasy genre:
    New Zealand actor Manu Bennett who played Azog in The Hobbit (and of course Deathstroke in Arrow) and John Rhys-Davies probably best known as Gimli in Lord of the Rings (and the voice of Treebeard).
  • The two female leads might look familiar too – Poppy Drayton appeared in Downtown Abbey, whilst Ivana Baquero played the little girl in cult classic Pan’s Labyrinth
  • The Shannara Chronicles television series has the highest production and marketing budget for any show in MTV’s history.
  • The big names behind the series include executive producer, Jon Favreau (Iron Man 1-3, Avengers: Age of Ulltron) and executive producers/Showrunner team is Al Gough & Miles Millar (Smallville, Into The Badlands)
  • The Shannara book series is the 4th best-selling fantasy series in history with millions of books sold worldwide.
  • The show was filmed over six months in the incredibly scenic country of New Zealand, with many local, talented crew members who worked on The Lord of the Rings films.

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