Will Burrows' name reflects his destiny. See, he's a 14-year-old archaeologist whose tunneling into the earth uncovers a long-hidden underground civilization known as The Colony. His adventures into this shadowy realm have so far played out over the course of five novels: Tunnels, Deeper, Freefall, Closer and Spiral. Before long they will come to the big screen as Relativity Media is prepping a Tunnels movie that could easily grow into a franchise.

Relativity has hired Swedish director Mikael Håfström to helm the first film, currently titled Tunnels. Håfström is best known Stateside for directing the creepy hotel thriller 1408, but later this year he will unveil his latest, a Sylvester Stallone/Arnold Schwarzenegger action movie called The Tomb. Most often Håfström helms thrillers, and so in one sense seems a great fit for this story of a boy confronting a dangerous new world. However, there's a certain element of risk in this director pick, as Håfström has never before directed a movie aimed at younger audiences.

Relativity has taken such a risk before. In 2012, they debuted the colorful family-friendly fairy tale Mirror Mirror, directed by Tarsem Singh, whose previous credits included the haunting fantasy tale The Fall and the surreal sci-fi thriller The Cell. Unfortunately, that movie struggled against critics and at the box office, but as someone who thought it was whimsical and wonderful, I'm eager to see what Håfström has in store for his first venture into family friendly action-adventure.

The production currently has a script penned by Joel Bergvall, Simon Sandquist and Andrew Lobel, but the press release doesn't hint about when Tunnels might delve into production. The book series has been published in 40 countries worldwide, and sold more than a million copies, suggesting there's already an eager audience for this adaptation. But as Gordon and Williams will be unveiling Terminal, their final installment of the series, this fall, the hype around the books and movie seem guaranteed to grow.

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