EXCLUSIVE: Walden Media has acquired rights to turn Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego? into a live-action film involving Jennifer Lopez. I’d heard that Walden Media will develop the property as a vehicle for Lopez to play the title character, but Walden Media said at this point, she’s attached to produce only. The hope is to turn the property into National Treasure meets The Thomas Crown Affair. The logline: When the ACME agency’s greatest detective Carmen Sandiego becomes the world’s greatest thief, it’s up to her former partner to follow her clues and track her down. Their cat-and-mouse game leads the partner to confront a greater mystery: Is Carmen really a thief or a hero? The property originated as an educational computer game before it was turned into an animated TV series.
The film will be produced by Lopez and her Nuyorican Productions’ partners Benny Medina and Simon Fields, and Underground Films’ Nick Osbourne, Trevor Engelson and Devin Andre. Walden Media CEO Michael Bostick and SVP Evan Turner are steering the property after it was acquired from Hougton Mifflin. The property fits into Walden Media’s mandate to create properties that challenge kids; Carmen Sandiego is used as a teaching tool in more than half of elementary schools nationwide. The project tried the movie route once before; Disney optioned it in the late 1990s and developed a version for Sandra Bullock, but it never went anywhere.
Lopez, who now works her movie jobs around her music career and judging duties on American Idol, most recently wrapped What To Expect When You’re Expecting with Cameron Diaz for Lionsgate and the Taylor Hackford-directed Parker with Jason Statham for FilmDistrict. She’s repped by UTA.