Movie News

Henry Selick Will Direct Neil Gaiman's THE GRAVEYARD BOOK!

Published at: April 28, 2012, 10:49 a.m. CST by Nordling

Nordling here.

Neil Gaiman's THE GRAVEYARD BOOK  is fantastic - a scary kids' story that really brings the emotion and is full of great characters, both living and dead.  It would make a great movie - honestly, I'm surprised Pixar wasn't all over this book.

And they may be yet in some fashion - according to Deadline, Disney has bought the rights to the novel, and has attached THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS's Henry Selick to direct the movie.  Selick has the perfect sensibilities for the story, and so far, this sounds like it's going to work splendidly.

One little caveat though - although I'm sure it will likely be stop-motion (although the article doesn't indicate if it will be) I'd love for this to be live-action.  Selick's last live-action movie, MONKEYBONE, wasn't so great, but with this source material and Neil Gaiman and Selick's vision, this could really be something special.  

Selick will make THE GRAVEYARD BOOK (or will it be THE GRAVEYARD MOVIE?) once he finishes a top-secret project for Pixar.  What that project is no one is saying, but Selick is a remarkable visionary and I'm sure whatever he's doing with Pixar will be visually amazing at the very least.

Nordling, out.  Follow me on Twitter!

Readers Talkback

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  • April 28, 2012, 10:51 a.m. CST

    First!

    by notcher

  • They had no idea how much of a cult thing that flick would become decades down the line.

  • April 28, 2012, 11 a.m. CST

    Great! This is a solid book ...

    by Judge Briggs

    Everyone should give it a shot!

  • April 28, 2012, 11:02 a.m. CST

    no mention of Coraline?

    by OptimusBob

    The previous Selick/Gaiman Collab?

  • April 28, 2012, 11:09 a.m. CST

    I'm gonna get a lot of hate for saying this, but...

    by Hardboiled Wonderland

    Bar his Sandman series, Neil Gaiman is one of the most overrated writers on the planet. I just don't get the worship he gets.

  • April 28, 2012, 11:12 a.m. CST

    Coraline was fantastic

    by Mr. Voodoo Potato Head

    I hope this happens.

  • April 28, 2012, 11:15 a.m. CST

    FUCK! I thought Neil Jordan was attached,

    by L. Ron Bumquist

    that would have been potentially awesome. This not so much. I guess they can smell toy and merchandise potential. Graveyard Book is the only decent thing Gaiman has done for a long while.

  • April 28, 2012, 11:19 a.m. CST

    May as well post it here -- the Dark Crystal sequel has been shelved indefinitely

    by Hardboiled Wonderland

    The Spierig Brothers have moved on and it's on "hiatus".

  • April 28, 2012, 11:33 a.m. CST

    Just as long as...

    by real5y

    they keep it set in England! If this gets set in America it will kill the whole story. Think of Roeg's 'The Witches' by Roald Dahl set in America. Would it have worked? I think not. The whole ghost structure in the Graveyard Book works because it covers hundreds of years of British history and the inherent class system. Who would be Silas? Alan Rickman? Mind you, he'd be pretty good as Jack too...

  • April 28, 2012, 11:35 a.m. CST

    How do you write this article without mentioning Coraline!?

    by Obscura

    Its odd that you dont mention the last Selick film, that was also based on a Gaiman novel. Much more relevant than Burtons scribblings.

  • April 28, 2012, 11:49 a.m. CST

    Animated and its waiting for Selick to finish a Pixar project?

    by Bass Ackwards

    That means it'll be what, 6-7 years before we see it?

  • April 28, 2012, 12:11 p.m. CST

    I didn't really care much for the book...

    by ManInTheMembersOnlyJacket

    Loved the beginning, but the book quickly ran out of steam for me.

  • Imagine if Walt Disney had called his movie the Jungle Movie.

  • April 28, 2012, 12:52 p.m. CST

    The director's brother was great in Magnum, PI

    by ThulsaBoom

  • April 28, 2012, 12:55 p.m. CST

    Henry should have got his brother for the voice of Coraline...

    by ThulsaBoom

    ....kinda ruined that one for me. We'll always have 'Quigley Down Under'

  • April 28, 2012, 12:57 p.m. CST

    Is 'Neil Gaiman' a name or a request?

    by ThulsaBoom

    Just sayin.'

  • All but Toy Story 3. This movie should be awesome. With Selick as the director, I prefer stop motion. Some of the shots in Coraline were mindblowing. If it had been a different director, I could see live action working really well, but let's play to the guy's strengths.

  • April 28, 2012, 1:43 p.m. CST

    Coraline...

    by dave

    The reason they don't mention it like they do The Nightmare Before Christmas is that Coraline was made by laika, where as NBC was made by Disney. Same writer, diff company, besides Laika has Paranorman coming out, pretty close to the graveyard book.

  • April 28, 2012, 1:43 p.m. CST

    I just wanna say this without having to mount a defenseq

    by dancetothebeatofthelivingdead

    I know that by saying this, I'm ging to called stupid, or be told to go read Dr. Seuss, and maybe even be called a nam or two. However, I feel like saying it anyway: I don't care for/like/enjoy/ or see the genius in Neil Gaiman's work. Now I have never even opened/ let alone read a copy of Sandman, which seems o be his most loved and/or best work. My wife read Neverwhere when it first came out, she grabbed it off the New Releases rack and just floored her, so naturally I read it once she was done. It was a decent book, nothing special to me, very droll writing style, the author, despite the story being somewhat interesting, didn't engage me or make me want to keep reading at any point. With how much my wife loved it, I went into it wanting and fully ecpecting to like it. It just kind of left me with a shrug of the shoulder. I didn't give up there, cuz Erica then strated devouring his books, and I read them all too. Same thing, liked them, well, most most of them, but I didn;t really like or love any of them. Now, I read. I read quite a bit. I'm no Albert Einstein, but I'm a pretty sharp guy and I like a book or movie to really challenge me as opposed to watching your average Sandler movie. So, It's not that I'm stupid, or that I "Didn't get it" The guy'swriting just doesn't impress me, engage me, or challenge me. I can see where his popularity comes from within the geek community, I just don't follow on this one. I'm not slamming the guy, so please show your own intellegence by not spewing venom and calling me stupid and recommending that I read Twight. This is an opion board, and I felt compelled to give mine. Nuff said.

  • April 28, 2012, 1:46 p.m. CST

    FUCKING EDIT FEATURE FOR FUCK'S SKE!!!!!!!!!

    by dancetothebeatofthelivingdead

  • April 28, 2012, 1:53 p.m. CST

    I think Sadman is absolutely fantastic

    by Bass Ackwards

    I think its something you have to be a bit patient with, but its a beautiful, big, majestic story, and its something I find myself returning to and re-reading and enjoying anew. That said, its probably the only thing from Gaiman I've ever loved. I think he's done some good stuff, a lot of alright stuff, nothing dreadful, but nothing that's ever stuck with me or resonated the way Sandman has. I don't go so far as to call him overrated, simply cause I don't really think he's a name that gets too much praise outside our limited nerd circle. But I don't disagree with having lukewarm opinion on the guy based on his non-Sandman work.

  • April 28, 2012, 2:23 p.m. CST

    I wonder what kind of books Neil Gay Man writes

    by Mel

  • April 28, 2012, 2:36 p.m. CST

    Stuff this...Mortal Engines is far superior!

    by Simon Butler

  • April 28, 2012, 2:46 p.m. CST

    They really should do stop motion for this-

    by ravenink

    Coraline ruled.

  • April 28, 2012, 3:05 p.m. CST

    Henry Selick + Gaiman = Greatness

    by Christian

    I think Coraline - the movie is one of those rare exceptions to the rule that the book is always better than the movie. Not even the fact that Selick moved the story from England to the US couldnt distract or take away anything from the experience (and it could have, mind you, seeing as how Gaiman is a very brittish writer and the characters and places he creates/descibes all have a very brittish feel to them). Also, Selick has a wonderful, dry humor and he knows how to adapt a story from book to movie. The changes he brought to the story almost all of them improved on the story from the book. He also managed to get a decent performance out of Dakota Fanning wich is saying something... When it comes to Gaiman I have sort of mixed feelings. I absolutely LOVE Sandman. I think that comic is genious, a true work of art. I also like Good Omens and American Gods (even though the ending to both books are very anti-climatic). Coraline and Neverwhere are... ok, nothing more. But the thing that bothers me about Gaiman is the fact that he and his family are scientologist. It really distracts from his writings.

  • April 28, 2012, 3:14 p.m. CST

    Amercian Gods sucked.

    by hallmitchell

    I didn't go past page 20.

  • April 28, 2012, 3:56 p.m. CST

    Things*.

    by Proman1984

  • And are you even aware how thick it makes you look to say a 600 page book sucked when you've only read 20 pages of it? Yeah dude, you're opinion is very highly valued in that regard. Uhhh, not really.

  • April 28, 2012, 4:22 p.m. CST

    Fuck yeah, tandemar!

    by Lee

    Mortal Engines was absolutely fantastic for young adult fiction. I felt it transcended that pigeon-hole completely - much like His Dark Materials. It reminds me a little of Metropolis and is just an incredibly heartfelt journey. I'mma read them books again.

  • ...at least half of the rest of his work gives me that weird, slightly off, something isn't quite right feeling that I get while reading Sandman. Neverwhere, American Gods, all the short story collections - Angels & Visitations, Smoke & Mirrors and Fragile Things, his Books of Magic, both Death books, Stardust, Signal To Noise, Good Omens, even Murder Mystery is quite good. Sandman set the bay high, but the guys work is still consistently pretty great. The stuff I like the least, unfortunately, are the kids books he's done with Dave McKean. I say unfortunately because I LOVE McKean's covers, but I don't dig his interiors so much.

  • April 28, 2012, 4:29 p.m. CST

    So, animated then...

    by Fridge

    Tired of Selick turning every Gaiman book into stop-motion. The source material here is great and it deserves a live action adaptation.

  • April 28, 2012, 4:44 p.m. CST

    @hallmitch: Twilight might be more your speed, you immense balloon-knot...

    by obijuanmartinez

  • April 28, 2012, 4:49 p.m. CST

    Gaiman's not a scientologist, as a post above claims.

    by Elsewhere

    A quick google search shows that. I haven't loved some of his novels. I liked American Gods, but didn't love it. Neverwhere is an adaptation of his teleplay that aired on the BBC, and is only "M-eh" from me (although I loved that one characters name was Door. And the Marquis. He was awesome.) Coraline is fantastic if you're young. Its writing style us a little simplistic, like the Narnia and Alice books, and don't hold up as well when your older. But I though Graveyard Book was fantastic, my favorite of his novels. Great stuff. His short stories are also amazing. Fragile things is perhaps my favorite short story collection.

  • April 28, 2012, 5:38 p.m. CST

    what Gaiman does well

    by mrgray

    I enjoy the man's work quite a lot, but I think it helps if you have an interest in mythology and the tradition of storytelling itself. Sandman, Anansi Boys, and American Gods are great examples of what Gaiman is really good at, which is calling on oral tradition and pre-existing stories (particularly fairie tales and cultural myths) to tell a story. Sandman draws from cultural myths about dreaming as well as the mythology of several DC characters (particularly the lesser-known). Anansi Boys and American Gods draw from similar cultural sources. One of the reasons he's so beloved by fanboys, particularly the smarter breed of fanboy, is that he has a great respect for the continuity of storytelling. You can feel in his work that he cares a great deal about honoring his influences. For some people, this makes him a bit too familiar. But it's never bothered me. He's certainly less flagrant about it than Quentin Tarantino.

  • April 28, 2012, 5:44 p.m. CST

    Totally agree mrgray

    by Jaka

    Except Anansi Boys has NEVER worked for me. I didn't enjoy it at all when I read it. I should give it another try sometime, I suppose.

  • April 28, 2012, 5:46 p.m. CST

    And I still say he's great with mood and tone...

    by Jaka

    ...but it's his OWN mood and tone. If you didn't like it in one of his works, it's likely you won't dig it in any of the others, either.

  • April 28, 2012, 5:48 p.m. CST

    Would love to see an Anansi Boys movie

    by tangcameo

    I don't care who plays the two sons but Anansi, if its cast in the UK, should be Lenny Henry. I can just see him in a loud yellow green plaid jacket and pants, showing up at the hospital (as in the beginning of the book) to visit his dying wife, followed by a New Orleans brass band.

  • April 28, 2012, 5:52 p.m. CST

    ...and for Christ's sake give Tori Amos an NG movie cameo for once

    by tangcameo

    She shows up in Sandman, Stardust, and Anasi Boys in the books (not to mention the things Neil's written for her). She should have a cameo in something they film. Let her be one of the graveyard, or the Grey Lady. She shouldn't be remembered for being the wedding singer in that cringingly godawful crapfest Mona Lisa Smile.

  • April 28, 2012, 6:34 p.m. CST

    I real like SOME of Neil Gaiman's work

    by deanmail

    dancetothebeatofthelivingdead ....check out the brilliant Good Omens which he co-wrote with Terry Pratchett. I didn't care much for American Gods myself. I really liked SOME of Sandman (involving Dream's family) and enjoyed his input on the movie Beowulf. Neil Gaiman started as a trendy cult Brit hipster "thing" and I truly respect him as a creative artist, he is not for everybody but he works best for me as a co-writer.

  • And if we could transport Tori Amos from 1991 we'd have our mermaid.

  • April 28, 2012, 6:44 p.m. CST

    Whenever I'm at my local 2nd hand bookstore I look for...

    by tangcameo

    ...Neil's first book. His bio of Duran Duran. I keep hoping I'll find it for $10 in the music section. Make a ton off it on Ebay.

  • April 28, 2012, 7:23 p.m. CST

    That's not what Neil Gaiman said...

    by Brian

    I liked it when Neil Jordan was attached to it. But seriously this morning, I read on Gaiman's own blog that Selick is not making The Graveyard Book... but I guess that could mean right now at this moment in time he is not. I guess it doesn't necessarily mean that eventually he won't make it. http://neil-gaiman.tumblr.com/post/21985108402/is-the-new-henry-selick-stop-motion-film-the-graveyard

  • April 28, 2012, 10:03 p.m. CST

    tangcameo

    by starlesswinter7

    I knew a Tori Amos reference would crop up in here. She and Gaiman are best friends and reference each other constantly in their work.

  • April 28, 2012, 10:11 p.m. CST

    Will Selick's Pixar project be stop-motion?

    by Nasty In The Pasty

    That'd be a first for the studio. In fact, I'd love it if Pixar made a hand-drawn feature, just to keep the tradition alive.

  • April 28, 2012, 10:26 p.m. CST

    I loved Coraline!!!

    by Henry Fool

    Aw, those buttons...<br /> <br /> Seriously, Gaiman and Selick are a terrific match. I'd much rather seen Selick continue to film adaptations of Gaiman's work than collaborate with Tim Burton. I'm glad he's continuing to keep the craft of stop motion animation alive. It's just a shame that we'll probably have to wait years to see the finished project.

  • Inexcusable.

  • April 29, 2012, 3:33 a.m. CST

    @starless I discovered Neil through Tori

    by tangcameo

    Well through Tori and Neil's appearances on an interview show called Prisoners Of Gravity (still available online at the TVO archives). I really hope they work together on something someday. My wish is that they collaborate on a musical version of Graveyard Book.

  • April 29, 2012, 5:50 a.m. CST

    The Sandman is a work of unadulterated genius.

    by Kill List Hammertime

  • That's the top secret project. After Rango Pixar couldn't get Depp to sign fast enough for them.

  • April 29, 2012, 9:16 a.m. CST

    Eva Green is doing the voice of Death.

    by UltraTron

  • April 29, 2012, 1:55 p.m. CST

    deanmail

    by dancetothebeatofthelivingdead

    Yeah, I haven't read Good Omens. I'll check it out, someone with as rabid a fan base as Gaiman has among people I respect will always merit another chance with me. I've read Neverwhere, Anansi Boys, Stardust GN, and American Gods. I really want to read Sandman but it's such an large expensive commitment and I can't justify the price in my mind when the guy hasn't hooked me in with anything I've read yet. Maybe I'll see if my local library has em. It might be a Tad Williams situation with me too. My wife was reading the Otherland series, her cousin had given them to her to read. I'm not a huge fan of fantasy novels, I like a lot of them, but they're not my preference. As she was reading Otherland, she went on and on about what a great writer Williams was so I picked up a few of his other books and read them while she read the series. I didn;t really like or dislike them very mush. Then I read Otherland, which I put right up there with Lord Of The Rings and A Song of Ice and Fire even though they're mor sci-fi tham fantasy. Once I finished Otherland, I went back and really enjoyed the previous books the second time around. It may be that Williams' writing style finally clicked with me, or I may have just wanted to love them because Otherland was so fucking amazing. Thanks for the recommendation in lieu of just stating that I'm a stupid fuck with no brain for not liking what you like. Could it be that Aint It Cool TB's are finally growing up? The Game Of Thrones TB's every week are full of stimulating discussions and maturity. The only execptions seem to occur when Mad Men fans get pissed that GOT is dominating the Sunday TB, then stones start getting thrown both ways. Anyway, that's off-topic. I will check out Good Omens, I'm sure my wife has it, I just gotta dig it out.

  • April 29, 2012, 1:56 p.m. CST

    THIS SITE NEEDS A FUCKING EDIT FEATURE

    by dancetothebeatofthelivingdead

    For people like me, dammit!

  • April 29, 2012, 4:03 p.m. CST

    Sandman is available at A LOT of libraries

    by Jaka

    I can see how cost would be prohibitive with something like that. You could always buy the first trade and take it from there. Problem with that is the first trade doesn't come close to showcasing the overall brilliance of the series (not until "The Sound of Her Wings", anyway, the last chapter). It's a great introduction, but the series doesn't really get going until the next arc. So, yeah, try the library. That way you could read it for free and/or decide if you like it enough to start buying the trades.

  • April 29, 2012, 4:13 p.m. CST

    obijuan and jaka

    by dancetothebeatofthelivingdead

    The only knowledge of Terry Pratchett that I have is that of a co-writer with Gaiman, so no, I have not read Discworld. What's that all about. Yeah, I might go grab the first trade of Sandman just to see what all the fuss is about. I;m a patient reader, even if something doesn't grab me, I'll fight to the finish anyway. So, a slow start wouldn't be a problem if there's a good jolt to lead me into the second trade. One of the people who agreed with me on not getting into Gaiman's work supported his argument above by saying that he/she quit on, I think it was Good Omens, 20 pages in. That's just a long preface, I've got a little more patience than that

  • There are books, films and animated stuff. Series has been running like 25 years or more now. First book is called The Colour of Magic...

  • April 30, 2012, 3:07 a.m. CST

    Funny thing...

    by tensticks

    I remember when Coraline was advertised ass "from the director of Nightmare Before Christmas", there were some ignorant people who grumbled that it was misleading advertising, to make people think Coraline was a Tim Burton picture and how dare they--neverminding that Selick is the reason TNBC is far more entertaining and palatable than it would have been were it a pure Burton production.