Genre hopping director Ron Howard is headed in another direction. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Howard is in talks to direct an adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s “The Graveyard Book.”
Disney had been working for years with Henry Selick to do a stop motion film similar to Selick’s adaptation of Gaiman’s “Coraline,” but that fell apart last summer. Now they’ve gone in a completely different direction, with Howard planning to do a live action version. They’re scrapping the script Selick had been developing and Howard will be involved in having a new one written.
Gaiman, famous for his graphic novels, pulled off a rare double with “The Graveyard Book,” winning both the Newbery Award and the Carnegie Award, respectively the highest American and British honors for children’s boooks. Reportedly his book was inspired by Rudyard Kipling’s “The Jungle Book.” Here’s the summary from Amazon:
It takes a graveyard to raise a child.
Nobody Owens, known as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a graveyard, being raised by ghosts, with a guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor the dead. There are adventures in the graveyard for a boy—an ancient Indigo Man, a gateway to the abandoned city of ghouls, the strange and terrible Sleer. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, he will be in danger from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod’s family.
This actually isn’t Howard’s first children’s movie, though it’s been a while. He directed the highly successful version of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” in 2000 and–oh dear–”Willow” in 1988. His next release is the race car drama “Rush,” which opens in September.