WB Dusts Off Encyclopedia Brown
There seems to be a growing trend in Hollywood of studio executives raiding their childhood book collections for new movie concepts. Earlier this month, Fox announced it has a tentpole the works based on the Choose Your Own Adventure books. Now, according to The Hollywood Reporter, Warner Bros. is doing something similar with Donald J. Sobol’s Encyclopedia Brown series.
Between 1963 and his death in 2012, Sobol wrote nearly 30 books featuring the adventures of boy genius Leroy “Encyclopedia” Brown, who solves mysteries in the town of Idaville with the help of Sally Kimball, his muscle and a pretty smart cookie herself. Each book features 10 short mysteries, most of which relied on Brown’s great knowledge and attention to detail in order to solve.
The concept spawned a comic strip credited to Sobol and artist Frank Bolle (Doctor Solar) as well as a 10-episode HBO series in 1989 directed by Savage Steve Holland of Better Off Dead and One Crazy Summer fame. However, all attempts at big screen adaptation have fallen through. Warner Bros. is talking to writers in an effort to break that cycle.
Fun fact: Bolle also created several Choose Your Own Adventure book covers during his long career as a cartoonist.