Disney recently announced that they have bought the movie rights to adapt Neil Gaiman’s 2008 children’s novel The Graveyard Book. After several years of attempt by different studios to adapt the novel it seems that it is finally moving forward with Disney. As the fourth studio to purchase the rights to the film, they wasted no time handing the project over to producer Gil Netter, who just finished producing another Yann Martel’s Life of Pi, another book-to-film adaptation.
This will be Gaiman’s third film, preceded by 2009’s Coraline and 2007’s Stardust, both of which received positive reviews. Gaiman also has a television series in the works with HBO based on his novel American Gods.
His two movie adaptations have both received relative success in the box office as well. Coraline has an IMDb rating of 7.7 out of 10 and Stardust received a 7.8.
The next adaptation for Gaiman, The Graveyard Book, tells the story of a young boy who lost his parents and is raised instead by the ghosts of graveyard inhabitants.
The official plot synopsis is below:
Bod is an unusual boy who inhabits an unusual place-he’s the only living resident of a graveyard. Raised from infancy by the ghosts, werewolves, and other cemetery denizens, Bod has learned the antiquated customs of his guardians’ time as well as their timely ghostly teachings-like the ability to Fade. Can a boy raised by ghosts face the wonders and terrors of the worlds of both the living and the dead? And then there are things like ghouls that aren’t really one thing or the other. This chilling tale is Neil Gaiman’s first full-length novel for middle-grade readers since the internationally bestselling and universally acclaimed Coraline. Like Coraline, this book is sure to enchant and surprise young readers as well as Neil Gaiman’s legion of adult fans.”
In the novel, each of the eight chapters is a short story, telling the story 2 years apart allowing the audience to see the protagonist growing up.
The book, already a commercial success, won the 2008 Newberry Medal for distinguished contributions to children’s literature. It also won the 2009 Hugo Award for Best Novel, Locus Award for Best Young Adult Book, and the 2010 Carnegie Medal.
Gaiman based his tale on a previous short story called The Witch’s Headstone, according to TGDaily.com.
It is unknown whether the movie will be live-action or animated, and no other production details have been announced.