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DreamWorks Animation Picks Up ‘Interworld’
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Best-selling author Neil Gaiman announced that DreamWorks Animation has optioned the film rights for his upcoming novel Interworld.

Gaiman said that in 1996 he began working with Michael Reaves on the idea for a story “about a boy who finds himself in the middle of a war between two equally powerful forces, who joins a super-team consisting of versions of himself from different alternate realities to try and maintain the cosmic balance.” Soon after, the idea was pitched to DreamWorks and other studios, but was turned down.

Several years later, the duo wrote the novel based on their original idea and once again, pitched it to studios which rejected it. Last year, the authors sent their manuscript to a Harper Childrens, which will publish the book with cover artwork by James Jean on June 26, 2007.

The novel’s early positive reviews attracted the attention of some movie studios, among them DreamWorks Animation, who plan to adapt it for film.

Gaiman posted today on his personal blog links to mp3 samples of Interworld‘s audio book read by Christopher Evan Welch (it’s all the way at the end of the entry).

Also out on June 26, 2007 is Gaiman’s M Is For Magic collection of child-friendly poems and short fiction, for which he’ll also read the audio book.

Earlier this month, Gaiman responded to report that the author would direct his first feature film, an adaptation of his graphic novel Death: The High Cost of Living. Gaiman said that he will direct the film and that Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth) will executive produce. Though he did not confirm reports that Transformers star Shia LaBeouf would play the male lead named Sexton Furnival, Gaiman said that he’s met with possible choices for the female lead named Didi, but that no one’s been cast at this time.

The film adaptation for Gaiman’s novel Stardust, which stars Michelle Pfeiffer, Robert DeNiro, and Claire Danes, hits theaters August 10, 2007.

As previously report, also in the works is an animated stop-motion film based on Gaiman’s novella Coraline directed by Henry Selick and starring the voice cast of Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher, John Hodgman, Ian McShane, Dawn French, and Jennifer Saunders. IMDB has Coraline opening on December 26, 2008, while Gaiman mentioned it would be around Halloween 2008. (Read more about the film’s production here.)

Gaiman, along with Roger Avary, wrote the screenplay for Beowulf, the performance-capture film from Robert Zemeckis based on the Old English poem scheduled for release November 16, 2007. The writing duo is also working on the screenplay for Black Hole based on the graphic novel by Charles Burns for director Alexandre Aja.

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