Producer Lionel Wigram is known for bringing the “Harry Potter” franchise to Warner Brothers when he was the Senior Vice President of production for the studio so when he taps a property to develop, people sit up and take notice. His latest stint as a producer was to pick up the rights to the Disney Hyperion fantasy YA novel ‘The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding.’ The work was released by New York Times’ bestselling author Alexandra Bracken.
In this venture he is working with Jeff Ludwig, VP of Wigram Productions and the pair look to have found something special in Bracken’s work. It is a tale that appeals to the Young Adult market but is entirely different from what we’ve seen in the Harry Potter franchise.
The first novel is described as:
Prosperity Redding is the only unexceptional member of his very successful family, that is, until he discovers a demon living inside him. Turns out, Prosper’s great-great-great-great-great-something grandfather made, and then broke – a contract with a malefactor, a demon who exchanges fortune for eternal servitude. Now Alastor, the malefactor, has reawakened and is intent on destroying the Redding fortune unless they can kill him in the body he inhabits, which, oh, wait, that’s Prosper, and why is his grandmother coming at him with a silver blade? In danger from both the demon trying to take over his soul and the family that would rather protect their fortune than their own kin, Prosper narrowly escapes with the help of his long-lost Uncle Barnabas and Barnabas’s daughter, Nell, a witch in training. According to Barnabas and Nell, they have only days to break the family curse and find a way to banish Alastor back to the demon realm. Until then, Prosper has to deal with Alastor’s vengeful mutterings inside his head (not to mention his nasty habit of snacking on spiders). And, every night, Alastor’s control over his body grows stronger. . . As the deadline to the curse draws nearer, Prosper and Nell realize there’s more at stake than just the Redding family fortune. . . that there might be something else out there, something worse than Alastor, that could destroy the balance between the human and demon realms and change the world as they know it forever.
There is a lot going on here, and the groundwork is being lain for quite an extensive world. As the main character is a 13-year old, there is also a very open young adult appeal which can be brought to life on the big screen as well.
According to Wigram:
“Alexandra has done a brilliant job in bringing this world to life in the mind’s eye. It comes to life in your imagination. The book has a wonderful sense of humor, and there’s a quirky tone, especially in the evil demon. She conveys what it means to be a teenage boy and girl under these particular circumstances; they’re very relateable characters in this fantasy world which is grounded and believable.”
This isn’t the first of Bracken’s work either as another young adult novel he penned, ‘The Darkest Minds,’ is set to be released by 20th Century Fox on August 3rd, 2018!
Are you looking forward to hearing more about ‘The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding’? Do you feel there is still an active market for Young Adult material at theaters or will this flop as many movies in this genre have been doing as of late? Share your thoughts below!