Twentieth Century Fox Animation is developing children’s book “The Royal Rabbits of London” as a feature film.
The upcoming book is written by Santa Montefiore and Simon Sebag Montefiore with Kate Hindley illustrating. Fox has not yet attached producers.
The story centers on a small, quiet rabbit named Shylo who stumbles across a band of ratzis and overhears their evil plan to take a photo of the Queen in her nightie. He travels to London to inform the secret society of the Royal Rabbits of London, a secret society charged with protecting the Queen, about the plot.
Publishers describe the book as “The Hobbit” meets “Watership Down.” The book is due to be published in October by Simon and Schuster in the U.K.
Santa Montefiero has authored “The Italian Matchmaker,” “The Affair,” “The House by the Sea,” “The Summer House,” “Secrets of the Lighthouse,” “A Mother’s Love,” “The Beekeeper’s Daughter” and “Songs of Love and War.”
Her spouse Simon Sebag Montefiore has written the non-fiction books “The Romanovs,” “Jerusalem: The Biography,” “Young Stalin,” “Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar” and “Catherine the Great and Potemkin.” His fiction works include “One Night in Winter,” “Sashenka,” “My Affair with Stalin” and “King’s Parade.”
“Royal Rabbits” is the first children’s book for the Montefiores.
“The story was inspired by our son Sasha, who imagined a society of rabbits living under Buckingham Palace, and developed with the advice of our daughter Lily when they were seven and nine years old,” the duo said in a statement. “But it is also about the struggle that every parent feels between the old world – books, reading – and the perils of the new – phones and computer games. Both of us have been so busy with novels and history books that it has taken us six years to write.”
The news was first reported by Publishers Weekly.