Erik Feig & Scholastic developing Animorphs film adaptation
Scholastic’s Animorphs novel series is one of the most iconic and long-running of the children’s book publisher and five years after rumors began swirling that Universal was developing a film adaptation, The Hollywood Reporter has brought word that Erik Feig’s Picturestart is teaming with Scholastic for a film.
Written by K.A. Applegate and husband Michael Grant, the novel series follows five teens, Jake, Marco, Cassie, Rachel and Tobias, who hold the special ability to morph into any animal they touch and must use their powers to fight a secret alien invasion of Earth. The film adaptation will be developed under the partnership that was announced during the launch of Feig’s new banner last year, which saw Scholastic providing Picturestart with access to its various IP.
The Animorphs film will be produced by Scholastic Entertainment’s Iole Lucchese and Caitlin Friedman alongside Picturestart’s Feig and Lucy Kitada, with Scholastic’s Friedman and Picturestart’s Royce Reeves overseeing the development of the script.
“The central themes of Animorphs have resonated strongly with kids for more than two decades, and the time is right for a feature film that takes this captivating sci-fi adventure to another level for audiences today,” Lucchese said in a statement. “Picturestart has an incredible track record of success, and Erik and his team are the perfect partners to help bring this exciting new series based on the adventure-packed books to movie screens.”
“We couldn’t be more excited to work with Scholastic to adapt Animorphs, an iconic book series with a wildly unique combination of exciting, witty, outlandish and grounded elements that feel all too relevant for our times,” Feig said in statement. “We know these books have a deservedly deep bench of passionate fans — ourselves included— and we hope to make Katherine Applegate and her co-author, Michael Grant, proud as we bring Jake, Marco, Cassie, Rachel, and Tobias to life for a new generation.”
The series has over 35 million copies in print, originally run from 1996 to 2001 and has 54 published books and ten companion books, extending into other media with a TV series adaptation that ran for two seasons from 1998 to 2000 and three video games, all released in 2000. Scholastic has also announced it is planning to launch a graphic novel adaptation of the Animorphs novels via its Scholastic Graphix imprint on October 6, with Eisner Award nominee Chris Gine adapting the first novel The Invasion.