One of Nickelodeon's most beloved shows from the 90s is getting a movie adaptation. Paramount Pictures has decided to turn Are You Afraid of the Dark? into a movie aimed at young adult audiences. While kids who grew up in the 90s are sure to be excited enough about that news, the studio has brought on Gary Dauberman, the man who wrote IT, to pen the screenplay for the adaptation.
Plot details for the Are You Afraid of the Dark? movie are currently being kept under wraps, but in addition to Gary Dauberman, Matt Kaplan will produce. The movie is being done under the studio's new division, Paramount Players. The division is headed up by Awesomeness founder Brian Robbins and, per Paramount's Jim Gianopulos, the division will "focus, in distinctive ways, on contemporary talent and properties for young audiences while drawing upon the vast resources of the Viacom brands." The Viacom brands bit of that is important, as Nickelodeon is a Viacom network and Are You Afraid of the Dark? originally aired on that network.
As far as Gary Dauberman is concerned, there likely isn't a more attractive name in horror at the moment. At least as far as writers go. Dauberman not only wrote the screenplay for IT, which is now the most financially successful horror movie of all time, but he's also responsible for Annabelle: Creation, which is another one of the year's biggest horror hits. He's also penning the script for IT: Chapter Two and he wrote the script for The Nun, which is the next spin-off in The Conjuring universe to be released. It's hard to think of a better place to start with an Are You Afraid of the Dark? movie, considering that resume.
Are You Afraid of the Dark? premiered on Nickelodeon in 1992 as part of their SNICK lineup. The show has a very simple premise that involves a group of friends, who call themselves The Midnight Society, hanging around a campfire and telling scary stories to one another, making it a horror anthology series for younger audiences. That leaves the door wide open for the creative team on this one. Will they go The Twilight Zone movie route and re-do a few of the old episodes as big-budget affairs with big name directors? Will it be an all new story? Or possibly stories? There's a lot of room to work with.
Horror had a massive year in 2017 and it doesn't look to be slowing down anytime soon. So it makes total sense for Paramount to think this is the right time to bring Are You Afraid of the Dark? to the big screen. The Tracking Board's report makes no mention of a possible release date or director who may tackle the project, but it sounds like it's in the pretty early stages. We'll be sure to keep you up to date as more details on the project are made available.