Goosebumps director Rob Letterman is set to direct the highly-anticipated adaptation of the iconic role-playing game DUNGEONS & DRAGONS for Warner Bros., sources close to the Tracking Board have confirmed. Letterman will be working from a script by Wrath of the Titans scribe David Leslie Jones.
Based on the popular fantasy role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons originally designed by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson and first published in 1974, the action-adventure tale centers on a warrior and his band of mystical creatures – including a half-dragon and a cunning gnome – as they embark on a dangerous journey to find a mythical treasure.
The film is being producing by Roy Lee of Vertigo Entertainment, along with Stephen Davis and Brian Goldner of Hasbro and Courtney Solomon through his Sweetpea Entertainment. John Middelton will executive produce for Vertigo, while Allan Zeman will executive produce for Sweetpea. Cate Adams and Drew Crevello are overseeing for Warner Bros., while Coral Wright and Josh Feldman will oversee for Hasbro. Solomon also directed the 2000 Dungeons & Dragons adaptation for New Line, starring Justin Whalin, Marlon Wayans, and Thora Birch.
No casting announcements have been made, but sources say that producers are eyeing a Vin Diesel-type for the film’s lead characters (it’s worth noting that Diesel himself is a professed fan of the game, having played it for over 20 years).
Last year, Letterman steered R.L. Stine’s cherished children’s book series Goosebumps adaptation to a solid $150 million worldwide against its estimated $58 million budget, breeding confidence in the director’s ability to handle an international franchise with a large – and potentially vocal – built-in fanbase. That could prove to be crucial, given the fact that Dungeons & Dragons is reported to be the best-selling role-playing game of all time, with over 20 million having played the game internationally and more than $1 billion in book and equipment sales. Goosebumps also showcased Letterman’s ability to handle a myriad of special effects creatures on screen, which ought to come in handy in bringing the expansive DnD world and its inhabitants to life. Letterman got his start working in animation, with additional writing and directing credits that include Monsters vs. Aliens and Shark Tale.
Letterman is repped by WME.
Josh Lyons | Managing Editor