Germany-based Ulysses Filmproduktion has optioned Terry Pratchett’s The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents as an animated film project, set for release in early 2022.
Based on the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin, The Amazing Maurice was published by Doubleday in 2001, the 28th Discworld book (and the first children’s story set on the Disc). The film has a few interesting names attached already, including Carter Goodrich, who did the character design for Ratatouille and Brave. The script has already been penned by Terry Rossio, who is responsible for Disney’s latest Aladdin revamp, as well as Pirates of the Caribbean and Shrek.
Ireland’s Cantilever Media will produce the film alongside Ulysses, and Rob Wilkins—managing director of Narrativia, the company created to manage Pratchett’s properties—will serve as producer. According to Variety, Wilkins was actually in the room when Pratchett conceptualized Maurice:
He was also with Pratchett when the author came up with the original idea for the novel after spying a Maxfield Parrish painting of the Pied Piper in the bar of the Palace Hotel in San Francisco. “Terry seemed lost in the painting and so I finished my beer and ordered another,” he said. “By the time it arrived, Terry had sketched out the plot for ‘The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents’ and had played it directly into my brain like a mini-movie.”
No more details are forthcoming, but it will be exciting to see Pratchett enter the world of animation. Here’s hoping for that 2022 release date!