APRIL 18,2012: LAIKA has optioned Goblins, the Scholastic novel from award-winning novelist Philip Reeve (Mortal Engines) which will be published in the UK on April 5 and in the United States in Fall 2013, and has signed EmmyÂ®, AnnieÂ®, and CLIOÂ® Award-winning director Mark Gustafson (The PJs, Animation Director on The Fantastic Mr. Fox) to direct the 3D, stop-motion film. The announcement was made today by LAIKA President and CEO Travis Knight.
Goblins, set in an extraordinary world of brilliantly original monsters and magical creatures, tells the story of riotous, ill-mannered, and all-around bloodthirsty goblins who live in the gigantic ruins of Clovenstone Castle, and spend their time mindlessly fighting, looting and menacing neighboring villages.Â Only clever young Skarper understands that an ancient and powerful magic created by a vanquished sorcerer is rising again. Soon giants, cloudmaidens, swamp monsters, treewarriors, rampaging goblins and hapless humans will be swept into a fabulous magical conflict that will determine the fate of their world, and delight discerning audiences of all ages.
“Goblins is a fantasy with bite,” said Mr. Knight.Â “It practically shimmers with verve, caustic humor, and piercing wit.Â Philip Reeve has pulled off a helluva feat, masterfully crafting a sly send-up of classic fantasy archetypes and adventures while lovingly honoring their underlying forms.Â Goblins is a thrilling, high energy swashbuckler teeming with wonderful surprises; at once hilarious and twisted, sincere and endearing.Â In the hands of LAIKA’s freakishly talented artists and guided by the ineffably gifted Mark Gustafson, it will make a strange, stirring, and altogether beautiful film.”
“I am delighted that LAIKA has optioned Goblins,” said Philip Reeve. “I love the look and feel that they achieved in films like Coraline and Moongirl, and I think the studio’s distinctive approach, led by the deft directing hand of Mark Gustafson, will be the perfect way to bring Clovenstone and its goblins to life.”
“Goblins is a fantastic book, full of action, humor, charm and surprising characters,” said Mr. Gustafson. “Philip Reeves has done a wonderful job of turning a familiar genre on its ear and creating a beautifully intricate universe unlike anything I’ve seen before. Â I’m personally thrilled to have the opportunity to work with my amazingly talented colleagues at LAIKA to realize the world ofÂ Goblins.”
Mr. Reeve is represented by Philippa Milnes-Smith of The Law Agency in London; Mr. Gustafson by The Gotham Group in Los Angeles.