Screenwriter David Reynolds (Chicken Little, Finding Nemo, Bug’s Life) has been hired to pen Universal Pictures’ screen adaptation of the Nightmare Academy books by Dean Lorey, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Director Stephen Sommers (Van Helsing, The Mummy) and regular collaborator Bob Ducsay are producing.
Nightmare Academy is a planned trilogy of young-adult books about kids in training to police nightmares and fight monsters that overstep their bounds. The action revolves around Charlie Benjamin, a new student who proves to possess an extremely powerful talent that opens a portal to the Netherworld, where dark forces plot Earth’s demise. Illustrated by Brandon Dorman (Fablehaven, The Wizard), the series is a likely candidate to fill the void left by the closure of the Harry Potter saga, especially with Universal bringing it to the big screen. The first book was published in August by HarperCollins.
Reynolds, who was nominated for an Oscar for co-writing Finding Nemo with Andrew Stanton and Bob Peterson, has a long list of animation credits. The former Late Night with Conan O’Brien scribe also contributed to the scripts for Disney’s Tarzan, Fantasia 2000, The Emperor’s New Groove, Atlantis: The Lost Empire and The Jungle Book 2. Nightmare Academy will most likely be shot live action with CG creatures and other effects.