EXCLUSIVE: Alan Taylor is swapping 1970s New Jersey for 1980s California for his next project.
The director, whose The Sopranos prequel The Many Saints of Newark is set for a September release, is to helm a TV adaptation of fantasy novel Stone Junction.
Taylor knows the fantasy world well, having directed numerous episodes of Game of Thrones and Thor: The Dark World.
The adaptation is being produced by Peter Luo’s Starlight Media, which backed Crazy Rich Asians and Midway, and written by The Man in the High Castle and Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams writers Kalen Egan and Travis Sentell. Taylor, Luo, and Brandan Dennehy will produce.
Based on Jim Dodge’s book, Stone Junction is set in a mythologized early 80s California, and depicts the fantastical childhood and adolescence of Daniel Pearse and culminates with his battle for life against oblivion. Like Tom Sawyer taking the Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, or Harry Potter free-wheeling across the endless highways of Easy Rider, this is a tall tale of rebellion, romance, revenge, and magic, woven into an American coming of age story. Under the guidance of his magical mentor, Volta, young Daniel may just be the greatest hope for a future free of the oppressive forces that seemed to have taken over our very lives.
The book was published by Grove Press in 1998 and is Dodge’s third novel after Fup and Not Fade Away.
It is Starlight’s latest TV project after it optioned Rebecca F. Kuang’s fantasy novel trilogy: The Poppy War, Dragon Republic and The Burning God.
Taylor, who has a first-look deal at Starlight, is represented by UTA and Circle of Confusion.
He said, “Stone Junction is a classic hero’s tale set in world that is as real as a trailer park but as fantastical as a galaxy far, far away. It’s as if Star Wars took place in 1984 Bakersfield and the Jedi were a ragged bunch of con artists and criminals. It portrays nothing less than the battle for the soul of the future — and it could not be more timely for our current troubled world”.
Luo added, “Alan is a fearless talent who excels in epic storytelling and has a stunning vision for this series that audiences worldwide will truly appreciate. The source material is a bold and clever adventure, which audiences are craving now more than ever. We’re very eager to get to work on making something special.”