Journey of the Spark is an upcoming episodic Audio Play based on the first two seasons of the TV show My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic. The play is written, directed, and produced by Haruka Imaishi (born Eric Ridenour), making her directorial debut.
Set between seasons 2 and 3 of the Friendship Is Magic continuity, the story follows young unicorn Twilight Sparkle causing a rift between her friends that forces her to run away, feeling as though her friends can never forgive her. This bout of dissension and confusion between the girls causes Discord, the spirit of chaos and disharmony, to once again break free of his bonds, allowing him to plot the end of harmony. Weakened by guilt, Twilight agrees to a deal with Discord that will forever separate her from everyone she ever loved. Now, in times of great darkness, the girls must venture beyond the reaches of Equestria to find Twilight and rekindle their fractured friendship if they wish to restore the Elements of Harmony and save the land of Equestria from the forces of evil.
Journey of the Spark was originally produced as a feature-length animated Fan Film until September 2014, when Imaishi announced that production on the film had been stopped, citing stress and health issues, though others involved with the production have expressed an intention to continue it as an audio drama.
The film's studio, Celestial Spark Studios, has a Tumblr account showing the film's production status among other projects. Snippets of the project are here, including an animatic "concept" trailer showcasing the story, voice acting, and overall tone of the story. At Midwest Brony Fest 2014, the team screened the first 10 minutes of the film's animatic, which can be seen here. The same preview was screened at BronyCon the same year featuring some completed animation, which can be seen here.
This movie contains examples of:
- Achilles in His Tent: Twilight appears to undergo this after being shunned by her friends for her mistakes: in the 2013 concept trailer, she is shown lashing out at Spike when he begs her to come back home to help her friends; while in the 2014 BronyCon teaser, she sounds more self-conscious about messing up again. Later scenes and lines seem to suggest that she comes around.
- Big Bad Duumvirate: Discord and Queen Chrysalis team up to get revenge on Twilight.
- Coming-of-Age Story: The story is one for Twilight, according to Word of God.
- Darker and Edgier: Compared to the show, though not by much. It is expected to be similar in tone to some of Don Bluth's works such as The Secret of NIMH and films like The Dark Crystal.
- Deal with the Devil: Discord manages to get Twilight to make one with him, allowing him to take over Equestria once more.
- Despair Event Horizon: Twilight crosses it when her friends turn their backs on her, leading to her make a deal with Discord to ensure she never hurts anyone again.
- The Exile: Twilight, after alienating her friends, is convinced by Discord to run away someplace where she won't be able to hurt anyone.
- Foregone Conclusion: The movie is set between seasons 2 and 3, meaning that of course Twilight and her friends will reconcile and turn Discord back to stone.
- From Bad to Worse: From Twilight falling out with her friends, to Discord's return, to Twilight running away and leaving the Elements of Harmony powerless to stop him.
- Must Make Amends: Twilight's friends embark on a quest to rekindle their friendship after they shun Twilight for a terrible mistake she causes.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: The exact details aren't known, but Twilight's actions somehow results in an event so catastrophic it garners her the hatred of her friends and Celestia. According to the concept trailer, said catastrophe involves a fire-breathing dragon burning Canterlot to the ground.
- Never Trust a Trailer: Almost the entire animatic trailer is made up of scenes from an outdated draft of the film. All the more fortunate for commenters who claim they can piece together the entire plot by watching it.
- The Quest: It's not called Journey of the Spark'' for nothing; in this case, it's the Mane Cast journeying to find Twilight after splitting up due to a terrible falling out.
- The Runaway: Twilight.
- Was Too Hard on Her: The Mane Cast come to this realization after casting Twilight out, later discovering how empty their lives are without her, which factors into their decision to find her.