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Development roundup: Guillermo del Toro’s 'Scary Stories' takes shape, Heathen comic gets a movie

Contributed by
Apr 27, 2018

After going through a slightly hair-raising bit of development purgatory, Guillermo del Toro’s film adaptation of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark is back on track with new financing and an actual development schedule. 

CBS Films and production studio eOne have announced a timeline for work to begin on the feature film, which is being co-produced by del Toro along with partners Jason F. Brown, J. Miles Dale, Sean Daniel, and Elizabeth Grave, according to a new report from Deadline

The Oscar-winning Shape of Water director originally had hoped to direct Scary Stories himself (he co-wrote the script with Sean Daniel and Trollhunters writers Kevin and Dan Hageman), but backed away from that role late in 2017. The movie will be helmed by previously attached Norwegian director André Øvredal (Polaroid, Trollhunter, The Autopsy of Jane Doe) and is set to begin production this summer in Toronto.

Fans of Alvin Schwartz’s deceptively (and addictively) frightening books know the best-selling series tracks the urban-myth-informed misadventures of teens who navigate a succession of chilling supernatural encounters on their way to solving a string of mysterious murders.

A release date for Scary Stories has not been announced, so stay tuned as development progresses.

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Also just announced is an all-new feature film adaptation for Vault Comics’ Heathen, the acclaimed, feminist-inspired dark take on Norse mythology created, written and illustrated by Natasha Alterici.

Per a report at The Wrap, Constantin Film and Prime Universe Films have picked up Heathen and handed screenwriting duties to What Happened to Monday co-writer Kerry Williamson.

Heathen’s titular hero is the female Viking Aydis, a lesbian warrior who literally pushes back against the Norse patriarchy by taking the fight to Odin, who in Heathen lore isn’t exactly doing anything to advance the cause of women’s self-determination. On the path toward defeating Odin, she must deal with a whole pantheon of mythical gods and beasts — a setup that gives the film’s creative team plenty of rich visual fodder to work with.

A production timeline hasn’t yet been announced.