EXCLUSIVE– Ol Parker, who wrote both instalments of the hit The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel films, has been tapped by Studio Canal and Blueprint Pictures to adapt Matt Haig’s acclaimed novel A Boy Called ChristmasThe book follows the early life of Father Christmas. Frequent partners Studio Canal and Blueprint acquired the book’s rights in a competitive situation. The book was published by Canongate in the UK. Hailed as an instant Christmas classic by the Guardian, and even more effusively by Stephen Fry as “the most evergreen, immortal Christmas story to be published for decades”, A Boy Called Christmas is set in Finland and follows the 11-year-old Nikolas. Nicknamed Christmas because we was born on Christmas Day, Nikolas lives with his woodcutter father, his mother having been killed by a bear years early, in a timeless, fairytale land. From there, the story evolves into magical tale evolving elves, reindeers and a quest.

Studio Canal and Blueprint currently have James Marsh’s Donald Crowthurst biopic starring Colin Firth and Rachel Weisz in post. The two companies are also developing Dan Mazer comedy Three Miles North of Molkom, a feature project inspired by Robert Cannan and Corinna McFarlane’s docu about Angsbacka, a 21st century playground hidden deep in the lakeside forests of Sweden, three miles north of Molkom. There, once a year, the gates open to a thousand international participants, who proceed to take part in a two-week extravaganza incorporating everything from tantric sex to firewalking and shamanism, The film is believed to follows a jock character, who gets separated from his backpacking friends and winds up at the New Age festival by accident.

Ol Parker is repped by the Knight Hall Agency and Management 360.