‘Rising’ to the occasion

Director David Cunningham has veered from “The Path to 9/11” to “The Dark Is Rising,” a fantasy film that kicks off the co-financing alliance Walden Media and 20th Century Fox forged in August. Walden Media brass are hopeful the new project will have franchise potential similar to that of its last major young adult novel adaptation, “The Chronicles of Narnia.” Part of a five-book series by Susan Cooper, “The Dark Is Rising” focuses on a youth who discovers at age 11 that he’s a Sign Seeker, last of a group of immortals dedicated to fighting a growing presence of dark forces. He comes to the realization that he’s charged with saving the world.

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