Ben Affleck has lined up his next directorial effort, and it’s a big one for Disney. Affleck has been tapped to helm an adaptation of Keeper of the Lost Cities, the best-selling fantasy book series from author Shannon Messenger. This could turn out to be Affleck’s first stab at directing a blockbuster franchise. Should it pan out, Disney will have lots of source material to work with to develop it for years to come.
According to a new report, Disney is developing a Keeper of the Lost Cities movie, with Ben Affleck attached to direct. The Good Will Hunting and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice star will also pen the screenplay alongside Kate Gritmon. Affleck will, additionally, produce the movie through his Pearl Street production company.
Keeper of the Lost Cities was originally published in 2012 and has since spawned a series, currently consisting of eight main entries and 2020’s Unlocked, which was billed as entry 8.5. The series also includes Exile, Everblaze, Neverseen, Lodestar, Nightfall, Flashback and Legacy. More than 2.5 million books are currently in print. The series centers on a young girl named Sophie who discovers she is a Telepath. The synopsis for the first book reads as follows.
“Twelve-year-old Sophie has never quite fit into her life. She’s skipped multiple grades and doesn’t really connect with the older kids at school, but she’s not comfortable with her family, either. The reason? Sophie’s a Telepath, someone who can read minds. No one knows her secret, at least, that’s what she thinks… But the day Sophie meets Fitz, a mysterious (and adorable) boy, she learns she’s not alone. He’s a Telepath, too, and it turns out the reason she has never felt at home is that, well…she isn’t. Fitz opens Sophie’s eyes to a shocking truth, and she is forced to leave behind her family for a new life in a place that is vastly different from what she has ever known. But Sophie still has secrets, and they’re buried deep in her memory for good reason: The answers are dangerous and in high-demand. What is her true identity, and why was she hidden among humans? The truth could mean life or death, and time is running out.”
For Ben Affleck, this adds to a growing slate for the Oscar-winning filmmaker. He has already lined up a remake of Witness for the Prosecution, as well as a World War II movie Ghost Army. On the acting side, Affleck starred in The Way Back last year and is set to reprise his role as Batman in Zack Snyder’s Justice League this year. He is also starring alongside Matt Damon in Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel, which is expected to arrive later this year.
For Disney, this could be another potential franchise to add to its huge stable of attractive IP. The studio is already home to Marvel, Pixar, Star Wars and more. Having a YA fantasy series under its belt couldn’t hurt anything. We’ll be sure to keep you posted as any further details on the project are made available. This news comes to us via Deadline.