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Dan Gutman’s The Genius Files is the latest hit teen-lit series that will be making the leap from the page to the screen as Hollywood continues to scratch the itch triggered by the financial successes of The Twilight Saga and The Hunger Games.
Part Spy Kids, part James Bond, the books revolve around Coke and Pepsi McDonald, 12-year-old twins who are part of an extremely secret government program that relies on young masterminds to help solve world-threatening problems. THR reports that up-and-coming commercial director Robert Rugan has just been hired by Warner Bros. to bang out the screenplay for the first installment of Genius Files on screen, with an eye toward handing the script off to someone else to direct.
The first Genius Files book came out in January 2011. One more followed and a third is due in 2013, meaning Warner has material to create a franchise if audiences respond to the characters and the writing. Parents may recognize Gutman’s name from the popular My Weird School series of books. They might not have penetrated the national consciousness the way the Wimpy Kid books have, but if Genius Files becomes a successful film, everyone involved could be household names by the time it comes out.br>
Warner tapped Rugan for Genius duties after reading his treatment for the original premise Beauregard Thibodeaux and the Curse of the Rougarou. (Say that three times fast.) Casting the lead twins will be key, as will finding the right director for the kid-friendly material. More on Genius Files as it develops.