Jack Black May Star in ‘Goosebumps’ Movie; New Story Details Revealed

Published 2 years ago by

jack black goosebumps movie Jack Black May Star in Goosebumps Movie; New Story Details Revealed

Many children of the 1990s were introduced to the tropes for old-fashioned scary storytelling – several of which are featured in the recent popular James Wan supernatural horror films Insidious and The Conjuring (as well as the less-beloved Dead Silence) – by author R.L. Stine through his Goosebumps book series. The stories would pit one or more different underage main characters against a colorful assortment of monsters and creatures – some being more comical than others (Monster Blood-fueled giant hamsters!).

The anthology format of Stine’s children’s literature is a natural fit for the television medium (a Goosebumps TV series aired from 1995-1998), yet the challenge of putting together a cinematic adaptation has so far proven to be unsurmountable for the same reason. Tim Burton was going to produce a Goosebumps feature-length film back in 1998, but it’s only been in recent years that such a project has started to make genuine progress towards becoming a reality.

The Wrap is reporting that Jack Black has entered negotiations to headline Sony Pictures’ Goosebumps movie, which has Neal H. Moritz (Fast and the Furious) and Scholastic Entetainment’s Deborah Forte (The Golden Compass) producing. Currently attached to direct is Rob Letterman, who collaborated with Black on the DreamWorks’ animated feature Shark Tale and the family-friendly modern live-action Gulliver’s Travels movie. (We’ll go out on a ledge and say that “From the team that brought you Gulliver’s Travels” won’t be the Goosebumps tagline.)

Black is reportedly lined up to portray “a Stine-like author whose scary characters literally leap off the page, forcing him to hide from his own creepy creations.” Truth be told, that’s not a bad approach to making a Kafka-esque setup more accessible to an underage audience. Question is, can screenwriter Darren Lemke – a co-writer on DreamWorks’ Shrek Forever After and Turbo CGI ‘toons and (presumably) the scribe responsible for the more family-friendly elements in the fairy tale re-imagining/box office bomb Jack the Giant Slayer – make something clever out of that concept.

goosebumps header Jack Black May Star in Goosebumps Movie; New Story Details Revealed

Goosebumps, as you’re undoubtedly realized by now, is going to be targeted more at a new generation of moviegoers and not so much the nostalgic 20-30 years olds who read the books when they were younger. It’s an appropriate move, since that is whom the original stories by Stine were meant for; yet, the the Letterman-Black team could be a worrisome sign that suggests the film might throw in unnecessary amounts of adult irony and cynicism (call it Smurfs syndrome).

By comparison, Lemke’s work in the DreamWorks’ animation department is a bit more encouraging – if only because his scripts have generally made for decent (if unremarkable) kids’ movies in the past. Here is to hoping that the Goosebumps film doesn’t feel the need to go heavy on the snarky asides; after all, it’s not really necessary to have it spelled out for adults and/or kids that Jack Black being chased around by mummies, ventriloquist dummies and giant killer worms (among other things) is inherently kind of silly.

Will you be taking yours kids and/or younger relations to see the Goosebumps movie when it opens in theaters?


Goosebumps is currently without an official release date.

Source: The Wrap

Follow Sandy Schaefer on Twitter @feynmanguy
TAGS: Goosebumps
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  1. I’ll see it based on the premise and the fact that Jack’s in it but I just hope it works in practice and not just in theory.

    The last great “made for kids but great for adults too” movies I remember seeing were The Emperor’s New Groove and the first Shrek (the three sequels that followed were crap, lets be honest). I hope it’s at least something like those two movies as well as capturing the spirit of the original books/show because it’s a balancing act that could easily fail.

    We need that ventriloquist’s dummy to feature though. That’s a must-have.

    • Really? Toy story 1,2,3; Surfs Up; A Bugs Life; Finding Nemo; Incredibles; Monsters, Inc.; Kung Fu Panda, Shrek 2, Lilo and Stitch;Atlantis; Treasure Planet;

      You don’t like any of those?

    • Shrek 2 is the best Shrek, follows by 4, 1, 3. Seriously, how can you not like Shrek 2?

  2. Yeah, forget the giant hamsters and stuff, just do “Beast from the East”. That was my favorite as a kid, there was an air of hopelessness throughout the book that wasn’t really matched by Stine’s more conventional horror stories.

    Man, the name Goosebumps brings back so many memories.

    • Same here.

      Memories of mostly laughable plots and the terrible show that aired on Nickelodeon that I still liked watching anyway when I had chance, despite preferring Cartoon Network’s output at the time.

      I liked “Say Cheese And Die” though. I have no idea how I recalled that title because up until I typed it, I could only describe it as “the story with the camera and the kids in the basement”.

      • It’s all on Netflix now. :)

      • Oh they were terrible books, for sure. But for eight-year-old me they were like crack, I couldn’t get enough of them.

        Remember how Stine would start each book with a fake scare, like a monster would appear in the first chapter, but it would just be the protag’s friend in a mask or something? I would fall for that every time. Man I was dumb kid.

        • Haha, yeah, as a kid, some were kinda creepy.

          Were you 8 years old in 1992? I was. I was a weird kid though, reading grown up novels at that age and hating when I was given books and movies aimed at kids my age which I felt were way too immature and childish for me.

          I remember being 6 years old and reading The Hound Of The Baskervilles while others in my class struggled with The Cat In The Hat. Pretty much says a lot about my development and why I preferred HP Lovecraft and Stephen King rather than RL Stine for my horror fix.

  3. The plot sounds interesting, but Jack Black is one of my biggest turn-offs.

    I won’t watch the movie is he’s in it unless the film manages to be more dark than comical.

    • He’s done some dark stuff though.

      I think he’s a required taste for some. I liked him in the vastly underrated The Cable Guy and then when Tenacious D released “Tribute” and it became a hit song, I got their DVD and fell in love with the TV show from the late 90s and love the guy in pretty much anything that isn’t a crappy children’s movie (hated Shark Tale, didn’t like the look of Gulliver’s Travels and haven’t been tempted by Kung Fu Panda).

      • Don’t get me wrong, he is capable of dark stuff, but the studio will probably be pushing the family friendly, often shirtless, cringe-worthy one we usually get if they cast him.

        • Well, my only retort is that family friendly movies are usually cringe-worthy. That’s why I avoid them where possible.

          Maybe I’m just getting older because I roll my eyes at Forrest Gump these days.

          • I’m probably older since I’ve been rolling my eyes out on that movie since I first saw it.

            • So you’ve never liked that movie? Ever?

              Interesting. You’d be the first person I’ve seen to have always hated Forrest Gump.

              That’s not being said in a negative way at all, quite the opposite.

              • Haha, no I never always hated it. I actually loved it when I first saw it (like, when I was 8), but even then a lot of the film felt to mushy.

                • I cant stand forrest gump, its also way to damn long much like cast away

  4. ive never found jack black funny

    • I’ve been saying that about Adam Sandler and Bill Hicks for decades. Never found them funny. One’s an idiot and the other’s just a ranting lunatic that spouts political views without the jokes to make that schtick seem interesting.

      • +1
        I never did either, his jokes just never came across as funny. The ONLY things I like him in are School Of Rock and Kung Fu Panda but that’s because I tolerate him in SOR and pretend it’s not him in KFP.

  5. I’d describe “Goosebumps” as “The Twilight Zone” for children, which doesn’t really say much because I grew up on Twilight Zone when I was like 7. I don’t consider “Goosebumps” to be all that entertaining aside from stories like “Night of the Living Dummy”, “Monster Blood”, and “The Haunted Mask”.

    R.L. Stine has a new show called “The Haunting Hour” and it tries to hard to be better than Goosebumps. It’s actually a lot worse IMO

  6. I cant see jack black without thinking. School of rock, i love that movie.

  7. Nooooooooooo! That project is doomed then. Jack Black is not just not funny at all but painfully annoying. I HATED their take on “Gulliver’s Travels”, which would actually make for a very good film if handled properly. There are so many comedians out there I cannot stand these days, especially in genre films:
    Will Ferrel’s Land of the Lost, Seth Rogens Green Hornet, Adam Sandler’s Bedtime Stories… all of them are neat concepts, totally run into the ground by hilarious overacting, bad dialogues and lame jokes.
    Genre comedy can work: see Ghostbusters, Men in Black, Bill & Ted or Back to the Future. The problem is that today’s comedians simply cannot find the right balance between fun and plot… The only series that has recently wirked is Night at the Museum…

    • Calm down dude, you’re overreacting. The movie can still work, though I will admit I don’t have very high expectations. But don’t condemn it from the start. Though for everything else you’ve said I agree. I cannot stand him, he is rather a nuisance and is not funny. As mentioned above I only like him in School of Rock (that’s because I just tolerate him for the movies sake) and Kung Fu Panda (that’s because I can pretend it’s not him. Though I didn’t like Night at The Musuem, I’m really not a big Ben Stiller fan.

  8. 1992 I was 8 and loving every goosebumps book that came across me lol wow time flys

  9. I dont like his way and no thanks.

  10. I like jack black, but This is my childhood. I think this should be left in the 90s, but if it’s this or (are you afraid of the dark) let it be this. Don’t mess with the other, or I’ll kill.

  11. omg omg omg this movie is staring in my grandmothers house and im going to be there in July when they are shooting the film. XD