Austria: Narnia stamp

Walt Disney Pictures/Walden Media will release their latest fantasy film called "The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe" in early December, just in time to kindle some Christmas spirit. The film is a new adaptation of the classic fantasy story by Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963). The film, directed by the director of Shrek, Andrew Adamson, will be in cinemas December 8, 2005 and will delight parents and children alike.

Lewis's timeless adventure follows the exploits of the four Pevensie siblings Lucy, Edmund, Susan and Peter in Word War II England. While playing hide-and-seek at an elderly professor's country home, they discover a magical wardrobe, which leads them into the land of Narnia. Once there, the children discover a charming, peaceful land inhabited by talking beasts, dwarfs, fauns, centaurs and giants that has become a world cursed to eternal winter by the evil White Witch, Jadis. Under the guidance of a noble and mystical ruler, the lion Aslan, the children fight to overcome the White Witch's powerful hold over Narnia in a spectacular, climactic battle that will free Narnia from the witch's icy spell forever. "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe", published in 1950, is the first book of seven in the "The Chronicles of Narnia" series. Lewis was a professor of literature in Oxford for almost 30 years.

During his times at Oxford, he joined a literary discussion society called "The Inklings", where the author of "The Lord of the Rings", J.R.R. Tolkien, was also a member. Thanks to his friendship with Tolkien, who was a very religious Catholic, Lewis regained the Christian faith he had abandoned as a teenager. They had both been deeply affected by their distressing experiences on the World War I battlefields in France. The last adaptation of the story for the cinema was released in 1988.

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