‘Monster High’ Finds Director in Ari Sandel

Ari Sandel is in final negotiations with Universal Pictures to direct the movie adaptation of “Monster High,” sources confirm.

The studio has been developing the project for some time with Neil Meron, Craig Zadan, Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage and their Fake Empire shingle. Alfred Gough and Miles Millar penned the script with Schwartz and Savage.

The female-skewing property focuses on the spawn of famous monsters, including Dracula, Frankenstein and the Wolfman (Draculaura, Frankie Stein and Clawdeen Wolf, respectively) undergoing the trials and tribulations of high school.

Mattel’s Playground Productions is executive producing.

From entertainment and publishing to video games and apparel, Monster High — a $1 billion franchise — is one of the biggest properties to launch in the last five years.

Universal’s VP of production Maradith Frenkel and creative executive Chloe Yellin will oversee the project for the studio.

Schwartz and Savage have an overall deal with Universal Pictures where they are producing “Just One Day” and its follow-up “Just One Year.” Isaac Aptaker and Elizabeth Berger will adapt the bestselling YA novels.

Sandel recently made his directorial debut on “The DUFF,” starring Mae Whitman. Sandel is repped by WME and Principato-Young Entertainment. Schwartz, Savage and Fake Empire are repped by WME and attorney Joel McKuin.

The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.

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