Ron Howard rescues aborted flick based on Gaiman's Graveyard Book

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Jan 23, 2013, 10:23 AM EST

A film based on Neil Gaiman’s beloved children’s story Graveyard Book was supposed to be released this year, but some behind-the-scenes shake-ups left the project in development hell. Now, it looks like Ron Howard could be its savior.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Howard is in talks to resurrect Gaiman’s 2008 novel as a live-action film. The previous, stalled version was a stop-motion flick developed by Henry Selick (Coraline, The Nightmare Before Christmas).

The book follows a young boy who is raised by ghosts in a cemetery after his family is murdered. Once the boy becomes a teenager, his family’s killer returns in an effort to finish him off. Dark? Yeah, a little. But it’s a heck of a story.

It’s great to see Howard step in to try and save the project, but it’s sad we won’t get to see what Selick could’ve done with the source material as a stop-motion film. He’s an auteur of the style and that story would’ve provided an awesome vehicle for the format. But, Howard is no slouch, and with the right script and casting this could be a great film.

If he signs on, Howard could be joined by Gil Netter (Life of Pi) and Ben Browning (Sanctum). The great Brian Grazer (Friday Night Lights) could also jump in as a producer. Now, if they’d just bring Gaiman in to write the script, this would be the best idea ever.

Are you glad to see The Graveyard Book come back off the shelf?

(Via The Hollywood Reporter)