Portland-based Laika Studio, best known for Oscar-nominated features such as Coraline, ParaNorman, The Boxtrolls, Kubo and the Two Strings and Missing Link, is expanding into live action. The studio has optioned Seventeen, the upcoming first novel by acclaimed screenwriter John Brownlow (The Miniaturist, Sylvia). Currently in production on its sixth animated feature film, Laika secured the rights after a bidding war and plans to adapt it as a live-action project.
“For the past 15 years, Laika has been committed to making movies that matter,” says the studio’s president and CEO Travis Knight. “Across mediums and genres, our studio has fused art, craft, and technology in service of bold, distinctive, and enduring stories. With Seventeen, LAIKA is taking that philosophy in an exciting new direction.”
“Seventeen is a stiff cocktail of wicked wit, exhilarating action, and raw emotion,” Knight added. “John has such a wonderfully unique voice. He’s crafted a brilliant universe with its own powerful identity. Seventeen is a thriller with soul, a sinuous adrenaline-fueled actioner with a sincere heart beating underneath its rippling pectorals.”
Knight, who directed Kubo and the Two Strings and has also worked as lead animator on most of Laika’s movies, ventured into the world of live-action himself with the 2018 hit Paramount feature Bumblebee. He is also directing the upcoming feature version of the hit TV series The Six Million Dollar Man, starring Mark Wahlberg.
Author and screenwriter John Brownlow is well known for his film and television credits. He is the screenwriter of the feature film Sylvia starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Daniel Craig and wrote and executive produced the three-part BBC limited series The Miniaturist, which starred Anya Taylor-Joy (The Queen’s Gambit). He also wrote the four-episode limited series Fleming, which starred Dominic Cooper as James Bond author Ian Fleming.
Laika was founded in 2005 in Oregon by President & CEO Travis Knight. The studio’s five films, Coraline (2009), ParaNorman (2012), The Boxtrolls (2014), Kubo and the Two Strings (2016) and Missing Link (2019) have all been nominated for the Oscar for Outstanding Animated Feature. Laika has also been awarded a Scientific and Technology Oscar plaque in 2016 for its innovation in 3D printing.