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Spike ‘Wild’ man for U

Studio, producers spark to Jonze's live-action vision

Universal has set Spike Jonze to direct the Playtone-produced adaptation of “Where The Wild Things Are,” the classic children’s book by Maurice Sendak. Playtone’s Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman will produce with John Carls and Sendak.

Landing the visually inventive director of “Adaptation” and “Being John Malkovich” has brought about another wild change for the project. Pic was originally developed as a CGI film, but the studio and producers sparked to Jonze’s live-action vision.

Published in 1963, “Wild Things” is the Caldecott Medal-winning story of Max, a mischievous boy who is sent to bed without supper. In his room, Max uses his imagination to conjure up a forest populated by the wild things, exotic monsters who embrace Max as their ruler.

Jonze’s partner Vince Landay will share producing duties. Universal’s Mary Parent and Holly Bario are supervising the project.

Warner Bros. and Playtone partners Hanks and Goetzman are proceeding with a CGI adaptation of “Ant Bully,” which was scripted and is being directed by “Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius” helmer John Davis. Playtone has wrapped the Chris Van Allsburg kids book adaptation “Polar Express,” a Castle Rock-Warner Bros. film that is a live-action motion-capture CGI hybrid. Robert Zemeckis directed and Hanks stars.

Jonze is repped by CAA.

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