Earlier this month, 20th Century Fox declared its intent to make a Choose Your Own Adventure movie, based on the 185-book series that has dazzled children for decades. Then this week, we learned that the Encyclopedia Brown books are also getting a big-screen adaptation. But there are so many other middle-reader series out there! So very many! Here are a few humble suggestions for other book series — some with hundreds of titles, some with a more manageable number — that would seem to be ripe for a Hollywood film treatment, given what’s currently popular.
- Cam Jansen: An elementary-school detective with a photographic memory and a built-in catchphrase (she says “click!” when she wants to remember an important clue), Cam Jansen solved mysteries over the course of more than 30 books, so there’s plenty of material. Jump on the Veronica Mars coattails, Cam! More in-school girl detectives!
- The Boxcar Children: How is there no movie about the four Alden children (and their dog Watch) who live in a boxcar? There are 130 books about them, and old-timey hobo culture was sort of having a moment a few years ago, so maybe there’s still time.
- The Redwall Series: There are 22 of these fantasy books, mostly about a noble mouse and his animal pals. It’s like Game of Thrones but for kids — adventures in distant lands, creatures who speak other languages, occasional brushes with magic, a series-specific religion, lots of weird descriptions of food, plus the books are told from different narrators’ perspectives.
There have already been a bunch of Nancy Drew movies, though between her and the Hardy Boys, it seems like that well is nowhere near dry, and even though there are close to 200 titles in The Baby-sitters Club canon, there is but one movie. And these are just the series! Remember, we live in a world that has no movie of The Egypt Game.