Two weeks after picking up a supernatural young adult novel from hot teen author Julie Kagawa, Universal is back in the YA market, picking up the movie rights to Josin L. McQuein’s upcoming novel Arclight.
Imagine Entertainment's Brian Grazer is on board to produce while Matthew Sand, best known for writing the 2009 Wachowski-produced action movie Ninja Assassin, will pen the screenplay.
The sci-fi YA novel is set in a post-apocalyptic future where the remnants of humanity are hunkered down in an outpost protected by a wall of light named Arclight, hiding from creatures known as the Fade. Into this enclave enters a lone teenage girl with no memory of who she is and how she survived in what is called the Dark but one who holds the key to its survival.
Publisher Greenwillow Books made a big investment in the title, paying McQuein $500,000 in 2011 in a two-book deal. The book is due to hit shelves April 23, 2013.
Pouya Shahbazian of New Leaf Literary & Media will produce with Grazer. Imagine’s Erica Huggins and Sarah Bowen will exec produce.
Arclight marks a rare entre into the sizzling YA field for Imagine, which next has Rush, Ron Howard’s racing pic starring Chris Hemsworth opening September 23.
Universal’s vp of production Maradith Frenkel and creative executive Chloe Yellin will oversee the project.
Sand, who also has Deepwater Horizon set up at Summit, is repped by ICM Partners, Circle of Confusion and Gang Tyre. New Leaf and attorney Steve Younger handled the book-to-film deal.
Stephenie Meyer's "The Host" doesn't have much in common with her Twilight series, except maybe the potential for a franchise.
Meyer is working on a sequel to the 2008 novel she began writing as an escape from the editing of "Eclipse," the third book in the Twilight vampire saga. And now that it too has reached the big screen, she's got more books in mind.
"Once you've created characters that have life to them, unless you kill them all, you know where their stories go. You're always aware of what happens next," Meyer told The Associated Press in an interview Tuesday. "I've got outlines for the next books. I would hope that this would be a three-book arc, but we'll see."
At an advance screening of "The Host," which premieres March 29, Meyer said she wrote the book when she was "kind of overwhelmed with vampires and red ink and a lot of people kind of having expectations of what they wanted from the next book and knowing that I wasn't always answering those."
"The Host" trades the vampires and werewolves of Meyer's previous works for space invaders. An alien race takes over the minds of their human hosts but leaves their bodies intact so that they can perfect the planet they believed humans were ruining. One human, a young woman named Melanie Stryder, refuses to give up her head space so easily.
Saoirse Ronan plays both Melanie and her alien invader in the film. Max Irons and Jake Abel play her love interests.
"The Host" will inevitably draw comparisons to the book and film series that made Meyer a phenomenon, but she hopes the story stands alone and appeals to a broader audience than just "Twi-hards."
For one thing, she calls it her "guy friendly" work because it explores bonds and loyalties beyond simple romantic love.
"When you're a teenager, love feels like life and death, but this is actual life and death, which is kind of more fun," Meyer told the Miami audience.
"Not to mention all the explosions and gunfire," said Abel, who plays Ian O'Shea, one of the human rebels in the story.
What "The Host" does have in common with the Twilight saga is a love triangle, though one complicated further by two distinct entities sharing one body.
"Jake and Max call it the 'love box,'" Meyer told AP.
Though she's attracted to complicated relationships, that conflict probably won't surface in the sequel she's writing.
"I feel like the 'love box,' as it is, is played out in this novel. It completely resolves into two happy places, so that won't be a focus going forward," Meyer said.
I find the Arclight news strange because the publisher isn't hyping it at all compared to their May lead Reboot - which is already getting a lot of hype around the interwebs. I doubt that we'll ever hear about the film past today. And I thought SMeyer was done with writing. NOOOOO.