After being in the works since April 2020, the new live-action Goosebumps television series has been picked up by Disney+. According to Variety, the new version hails from Scholastic Entertainment, the media division of Scholastic, Neal H. Moritz, producer of the Goosebumps and Goosebumps 2 films, and Sony Pictures TV. Based on the best-selling books by RL Stine, the streamer has given the show a 10-episode order.
Interestingly, the Disney+ Goosebumps series will not follow the anthology format of the 1995 television show. Instead, the entire story will focus on a group of five high schoolers who unleash supernatural forces upon their town. Thanks to, and despite their friendships, rivalries, and pasts with each other, the group must work together to save their home. In doing so, they also learn about their parents’ long-forgotten teenage secrets.
Nick Stoller and Rob Letterman will serve as writers and executive producers for the live-action Goosebumps series, with Stoller executive producing via Stoller Global Solutions. Letterman will also direct the first episode. Pavun Shetty, Conor Welch, Iole Lucchese, and Caitlin Friedman are also handling producing duties. Sony Pictures Television Studios is the studio (via Deadline).
Created by R.L Stine, Goosebumps began as a series of children’s horror fiction novels, published by Scholastic Publishing. The stories follow child characters, who find themselves in scary situations, usually involving monsters and other supernatural elements. Throughout the mid-1990s, it became one of the best-selling book franchises of all time.
Since the release of Welcome to Dead House, in July 1992, the Goosebumps series has sold over 400 million books worldwide in thirty-two languages, becoming the second-best-selling book series in history, after J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter. Individual books in the series have been listed in several bestseller lists, including the New York Times Best Seller list for children.
Various Goosebumps spin-off series have also been written by Stine. This includes Goosebumps Series 2000, Give Yourself Goosebumps, Tales to Give You Goosebumps, Goosebumps Triple Header, Goosebumps HorrorLand, Goosebumps Most Wanted, and Goosebumps SlappyWorld. Another series called Goosebumps Gold was also created but never released. The books also spawned a television series and merchandise, as well as a series of feature films, starring Jack Black as Stine.
Speaking about his creative process in the Tales from the Crypt: From Comic Books to Television documentary, R.L Stine said he remembered reading the popular Tales from the Crypt comic books when he was young and credited it as one of his inspirations. And some of his ideas came from real life. Stine got the idea for The Haunted Mask after his son had a Halloween mask he had trouble getting off. He also uses his childhood fears to help him write his books.
The newest iteration of R.L Stine’s books will be the second live-action Goosebumps series to make it to air. The first version ran for four seasons and 74 episodes between 1996 and 1998. That show was an episodic anthology, with each episode based on a different book. For Stine, this will be the second series he’s done with Disney+. The company recently released a series based on his Just Beyond graphic novels. Billed as a horror-comedy anthology, the series was adapted for television by Seth Grahame-Smith. The first eight-episode season premiered on October 13, 2021.