Shawn Levy Takes Over For Brett Ratner On 39 Clues

By Katey Rich 2012-05-10 21:46:34discussion comments
Shawn Levy Takes Over For Brett Ratner On 39 Clues image
When The 39 Clues first sputtered toward existence as a movie, it was a DreamWorks and Paramount project with Steven Spielberg planning to produce and possibly direct. At the time, back in 2008, the book series had just begun publishing, but there were already plans in place for a ten-book series, plus collectibles cards and an online adventure game. It was a big deal, and exactly the kind of book adaptation everyone wanted in on at the height of Harry Potter mania.

Years later, DreamWorks is no longer based at Paramount but is still involved in the project, and though Spielberg is still on board as producer, the project is two degrees removed from the possibility of him directing. Brett Ratner at one point had signed on to take it over, but now Deadline reports that Shawn Levy will take over those duties. Levy was behind the two smash hit Night at the Museum movies, and it's clear the idea is to repeat that success with DreamWorks. The books and online game follow two kids who discover they are part of one of the world's most important families, and go on an international treasure hunt to solve various mysteries. It sounds more like a kid version of National Treasure to me, but given how well that movie did, I guess that's not a bad thing either.

Levy is already committed to directing Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn in the comedy Interns, so any work he does on 39 Clues is a way off. Ratner for his part, has a couple of projects that might happen, including a Hercules movie with Dwayne Johnson and the Midnight Run remake you didn't ask for. Generally we celebrate whenever Ratner bails on a project, but while 39 Clues seemed like a noisy kid-friendly movie he'd be well-suited for, each of these other projects seem easily ruined by Ratner's style. Sorry, Shawn Levy, but you should've let him keep this one.
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