Warner Bros. Lines Up Writer, Director for "Bone" Adaptation

Warner Bros. has tapped Patrick Sean Smith, creator of the ABC Family series "Greek," to pen an adaptation of Jeff Smith's beloved all-ages fantasy comic "Bone." Heat Vision reports that P.J. Hogan ("Muriel's Wedding," "Peter Pan") is attached to direct.

Published from 1991 to 2004, "Bone" follows cousins Fone Bone, Phoney Bone and Smiley Bone as they're run out of Boneville and become separated and lost in a vast, uncharted desert. One by one they make their way into the deep, forested Valley filled with wonderful and terrifying creatures until they're reunited at the farm of Gran'Ma Ben and her granddaughter Thorn. There they discover the lush Valley is threatened by an evil force known as the Lord of the Locusts.

Like the Bone cousins, the adaptation has traveled a long, perilous path, dating back to at least 1999, when Jeff Smith began work on a screenplay for Nickelodeon Pictures. By 2003, however, Smith's Cartoon Books and Nickelodeon parted company over vast creative differences that reportedly included the studio's desire to include pop songs. Warner Bros. picked up the rights five years later.

At the "Bone" panel at Comic-Con International in July, Smith revealed Warner Bros. had shown him a four-minute long 3D animated short of "Fone and Phoney running around the desert with a map," and that it was well done. He added that the animation "looked like my drawings walking around."

According to Heat Vision, Animal Logic, the animation house behind "Happy Feet 2" and "Legends of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole," is working on the film. Hogan is expected to polish the script once Patrick Sean Smith is finished.

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