Getty Images / Templar Publishing
In the last year or so, Paramount Pictures has taken a different approach to the franchise-building that helps many studios fund their annual slate. Paramount is hoping to start a new franchise by making movies based on the OLOGIES series of Y.A. books that includes the likes of Monsterology, Dragonology, Vampireology and ten others.
Published by Templar Publishing, the books have sold 18 million copies and been translated into 40 languages, leading to auxiliary books and merchandise. The first book Dragonology was published in 2003 with the most recent book Knightology being published last year.
Because each of the Ology books has been written by a different author, Paramount is following suit by putting together a writers’ room overseen by Akiva Goldsman through his Weed Road banner. The list of names that will take part in plotting the movies includes Jeff Pinkner (Welcome to the Jungle), Pulitzer Prize winner Michael Chabon (The Adventures of Kavalier and Clay), Kingkiller Chronicle writer Lindsey Beer, Black Panther writer Joe Robert Cole, Guardians of the Galaxy and Captain Marvel writer Nicole Perlman, as well as Christina Hodson who was part of the similar Transformers writers room and wrote Bumblebee, which Paramount will release on Dec. 21.
Paramount hopes to create a family-friendly live action franchise based around a research institute where they study sciences that aren’t the norm.
Hopefully, the first thing this writers room will do is find a better overall name for this franchise other than “Ologies” (or “Ology” in the singular), because Paramount will want to attract others who aren’t familiar with the books. (Not to be too down on this project, knowing very little about the books, but Paramount has attempted other book-based franchise in the past with mixed results.)
Paramount has Wyck Godfrey and Liz Raposo overseeing the writers room with hope that each writer will pick one book to focus on, creating a treatment with the visual artists who will also be involved in this creative summit.
The early idea is to have this collaboration lead to seven scripts with interconnected stories and Goldsman writing one of them.
Goldsman will produce the films alongside his plans to start a new franchise based around Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six, an adaptation the studio has been trying to crack for over a decade. Josh Applebaum and Andre Nemec are writing that script with hopes of luring Ryan Reynolds to play ex-Navy SEAL Clark, who has appeared in several of the previous Jack Ryan films.
Geoff Stier is overseeing the project for Paramount while Weed Road’s Greg Lessans will be an exec. producer. Kohner Agency reps Templar Publishing and was involved with coalescing the rights to the book series to Paramount after the rights were scattered with Universal allowing the rights to lapse.
This news was first reported by Deadline.
Edward Douglas | East Coast Editor