Visual effects and stop-motion animation legend Ray Harryhausen has teamed with family entertainment company Angel Gate to present War Eagles, a novel based on an original concept by King Kong creator/producer Merian C. Cooper. One of a number of intriguing film ideas Cooper never got off the ground, the adventure tale about a lost tribe of eagle-riding warriors has long fascinated Harryhausen, whose Ray Harryhausen Presents shingle is also developing a feature film version with Angel Gate parent company Left Field Film Corp. and Hand Picked Films.
The War Eagles story is set just prior to the start of WWII and revolves around a publicly humiliated Army Air Corps test pilot who was court-martialed and discharged from the service for an unauthorized flight that ultimately endangered the life of President Roosevelt. He takes the only job he can get’flying an experimental airplane around the world from pole to pole’and ends up stranded on an uncharted island above the Arctic Circle. The island is inhabited by a lost tribe of Norsemen who ride giant eagles that, in a surprising turn of events, become America’s only hope against a devastating sneak attack by the Nazis and their powerful new electromagnetic weapon.
The tome is the first in a series of Ray Harryhausen Presents novels to be produced by Angel Gate. Blue Water Comics currently distributes a series of Ray Harryhausen Presents comic books, including Sinbad: Rogue of Mars, 20 Million Miles More, Flying Saucers Vs. the Earth, Wrath of the Titans, Jason and the Argonauts: The Kingdom of Hades and It Came From Beneath the Sea’ Again!
The comics are all based on classic films featuring Harryhausen’s stop-motion effects and character animation. Cooper originally planned to make War Eagles using stop-motion, as he did with the original King Kong, but CG will most likely be used to bring the story to the screen, should it manage to finally take flight after all these years.