You guys know the drill by now, right? There’s a young adult novel that takes place after an apocalypse. It’s the first of a planned trilogy. Hollywood has come running. The end. Well, maybe you want some specifics. Fox 2000 and The Donner Company have acquired the rights to author D.J. MacHale’s SYLO Chronicles trilogy, of which only the first novel has been published so far. Hired to direct the film is Thor Fruedenthal, whose last film was Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters, which came out in August. Fruedenthal will be reteaming with Sea of Monsters scribe Marc Guggenheim, one of the co-writers of Green Lantern. Not the strongest cinematic tag team in the world, but we’re hoping for something awesome.
Published in July by Razorbill, SYLO tells the story of a group of survivors who are stranded on a small island, cut off from the rest of society, and it appears a secret government military organization is responsible for keeping them there. Some teenagers attempt to escape to the mainland, but they soon discover that the U.S. is virtually empty now, with most of the population having vanished, and the island was actually a safe haven for them. Of course, they then try to figure out what’s really going on. (Hint: it’s an invasion.) I haven’t read this, as I usually avoid the current wave of YA dystopias, but I’ve read a lot of good press on this book, and MacHale even showed up at this year’s Comic-Con to promote it. I may need to add it to my To Read List at some point soon. The second novel in the series, Storm, will come out on March 25, 2014, with a third book to follow in the fall.
Aside from Sea of Monsters, which was a global success though it failed to earn its budget back domestically, Freudenthal also directed 2010’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid and 2009’s Hotel for Dogs before directing the first season of the young adult spy web series Aim High.
Guggenheim, meanwhile, has only the two previously mentioned films under his belt, but he’s been working in TV and video games for years. He created the short-lived series Eli Stone and is one of the developers behind CW’s Arrow. He has also written on shows such as Law & Order and Flashforward. He’s currently working on an animated film for Guillermo del Toro.
Given the fact that there isn’t even a script yet, it’ll probably be next year before we see any other movement on this project. Until then, busy yourself with some of MacHale’s other books, which include the Pendragon fantasy series as well as the Morpheus Road trilogy. You can see the promo video for SYLO below.