LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) – The creators of “Smallville” are switching their milieu from superheroes and the male demo to monsters, musicals and tween girls.
Alfred Gough and Miles Millar, whose writing credits also include the movies “Shanghai Noon” and “Spider-Man 2,” are coming aboard to script Universal’s “Monster High,” based on a new Mattel property.
The monster musical is set at “frighteningly fashionable” Monster High and features the spawn of famous monsters including Dracula, Frankenstein and the Wolfman undergoing the perils of high school.
After years of making toys based on other companies’ properties or movies, Mattel this summer is launching its first in-house brand created from scratch, pushing “Monster” through a combination of books, webisodes, animation as well as toys, apparel and accessories. And no entertainment line today can be complete without the all-but-inevitable live-action movie.
The picture is bringing a musical approach to a tone that will be part “Beetlejuice” and part “The Addams Family.”
On the surface, Gough and Millar seem an odd choice for the material. They broke into the film business with “Lethal Weapon 4,” the 1998 installment of the Mel Gibson franchise, establishing themselves as writers of action with a comedic flair. In addition to acting as showrunners on “Smallville,” they wrote “Shanghai Noon,” “Shanghai Knights,” “The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor” and “I Am Number Four,” an adaptation of James Frey and Jobie Hughes’ young-adult novel that is in preproduction at DreamWorks.
But the writers recently have been more in touch with their feminine side. They produced last year’s “Hannah Montana: The Movie,” which sang its way to almost $80 million at the domestic box office, and are developing and writing a television pilot for a revamp of “Charlie’s Angels.”