Juan José Campanella to Direct Heck


Juan José Campanella, who directed foreign-language Oscar winner The Secret in Their Eyes, is making his English-language directing debut by adapting children’s fantasy novel “Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go,” written by Dale E. Basye and illustrated by Bob Dob.

Publisher Random House describes the book as follows:

When Milton and Marlo Fauster die in a marshmallow bear explosion, they get sent straight to Heck, an otherworldly reform school. Milton can understand why his kleptomaniac sister is here, but Milton is—or was—a model citizen. Has a mistake been made? Not according to Bea “Elsa” Bubb, the Principal of Darkness. She doesn’t make mistakes. She personally sees to it that Heck—whether it be home-ec class with Lizzie Borden, ethics with Richard Nixon, or gym with Blackbeard the Pirate—is especially, well, heckish for the Fausters. Will Milton and Marlo find a way to escape? Or are they stuck here for all eternity, or until they turn 18, whichever comes first?

The project is set up at Spyglass Entertainment. A second book, “Rapacia: The Second Circle of Heck,” was published last year, and a third book, “Blimpo: The Third Circle of Heck,” will be released next month.