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DreamWorks Animation Nabs Rights to Cressida Cowell’s ‘The Wizards of Once’

Author of the ‘How To Train Your Dragon’ book series will once again see one of her captivating fantasy adventure series brought to life by DreamWorks Animation.

GLENDALE, CA -- DreamWorks Animation has made a deal for the rights to award winning, internationally bestselling author Cressida Cowell’s new fantasy novel series, The Wizards of Once. The first installment of the book series, “The Wizards of Once,” will be released through Hodder Children’s Books in the UK, and Little, Brown Books for Young Readers in the U.S. this fall.

A prolific writer of children’s fiction, the U.K.-based Cowell is best known for authoring and illustrating the popular 12-book “How to Train Your Dragon” series, which was adapted by DreamWorks Animation into an award winning and highly successful animated film franchise including How to Train Your Dragon (2010) and How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014). How to Train Your Dragon 3 is currently in production and is set for release on March 1, 2019 from DreamWorks Animation and Universal Pictures. The bestselling book series is published in 38 languages.

“Cressida is part of the DreamWorks family and with ‘The Wizards of Once’ she once again anchors a new franchise for us,” said Chris deFaria, President of DreamWorks Feature Animation Group, in making the announcement. “The story is packed with the perfect elements to create a unique magical universe inhabited by adventurous, funny and memorable characters that will enthrall generations to come. We are honored to have another opportunity to partner with this amazingly creative author.”

“I am absolutely thrilled to be continuing my partnership with DreamWorks Animation,” Cowell added. “The artistry and technical wizardry of their creative team is simply unparalleled. DreamWorks Animation is pushing the boundaries of what is possible in animation, and they have the imagination, ambition and vision that every writer dreams of. I have been blown away by their ability to translate the spirit, heart, humor and adventure of my ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ books to the screen, and I know that they will be able to do the same with ‘The Wizards of Once.’”

Laced with Cowell’s trademark wit, and the same stunning combination of action, adventure, humor, and heart that made How to Train Your Dragon a beloved bestselling franchise, “The Wizards of Once” will transport readers to a world of magic where wizards and warriors collide in a thrilling and enchanting adventure. Cowell, who is an ambassador for the U.K.’s National Literacy Trust and the Reading Agency, and a founder patron of the Children’s Media Foundation, is repped by Nicky Lund of David Higham Associates Ltd., WME and attorney David Colden.

A division of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group specializing in animated feature film, television and digital content, DreamWorks Animation most recently released the successful and visually stunning comedy Trolls, starring Anna Kendrick and Justin Timberlake, which has grossed $345 million globally at the box office. The next film release from the feature animation division will be the hilarious comedy The Boss Baby, starring Alec Baldwin, opening on March 31st, followed by Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie, which stars Kevin Hart, Ed Helms, Nick Kroll and Thomas Middleditch and will be released on June 2nd. The Boss Baby and Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie will be the last films released by Twentieth Century Fox under a distribution deal that expires at the end of 2017.

Source: DreamWorks Animation

Jennifer Wolfe's picture

Formerly Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network, Jennifer Wolfe has worked in the Media & Entertainment industry as a writer and PR professional since 2003.