One to Watch is a Page to Premiere original series where we conduct interviews with authors of adaptations we believe you should keep your eye on. Our first selection is Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs.
PageToPremiere: Where is your book in the adaptation process?
Ransom Riggs: Tim Burton is attached to direct the film, which makes my little closet-goth-boy heart palpitate with joy. The fantastically-talented Jane Goldman is writing the script — she also wrote Kick-Ass, X-Men: First Class, and The Woman in Black. Also, her hair is astoundingly pink. Peter Chernin is producing, and the project is set up at Fox. As far as I know, no casting has been done and there’s no official release date … yet! But gears are turning, and I couldn’t be more excited.
P2P: How much input have you had on the adaptation?
RR: I’ve had some meetings with the studio and the producers, and everyone’s been fantastically kind to me. I’m planning to haunt the set and make a total pest of myself once shooting starts. (Just kidding, producers! I kid!)
P2P: What do you expect to stand out in the adaptation?
RR: Atmosphere is a really key ingredient in my story, so I think the sets, locations, and cinematography will really be standouts. There are, of course, plenty of opportunities in my story about children with special powers for the use of effects, though I’m generally a fan of films where the effects are low-key, naturalistic, and don’t steal every scene they’re in. Casting will be crucial, too; I think we really have to fall in love with Jacob and Emma, the leads.
P2P: What aspect of the adaptation are you most excited for?
RR: I really love the craft service table on film sets. They always, without fail — I think it’s a union rule? — have Red Vines. Once I’ve stuffed myself with Red Vines, though, I’ll be most excited about watching the director translate the images that have been flickering in my head for so long into *real* ones — and hearing actors say words I typed into Microsoft Word two years ago, before I had any idea that anyone other than my friends and my mom would read this book — that will be spectacularly mind-boggling, I imagine.
P2P: What aspect of your book do you think would be the most challenging to bring to the screen?
RR: Getting the tone just right will be a balancing act, I think. There are parts of the book that feel like a detective story, other parts that have a horror-esque tone or a fantasy tone and still others that feel more like straight-up contemporary YA.
With Tim Burton directing, Jane Goldman writing the script, Peter Chernin (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) producing, and the fantastic foundation laid down by Ransom Riggs himself, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is certainly one to watch.