Universal Pictures has acquired the rights to the recently released children's book The Terrible Two by Mac Barnett and Jory John, with illustrations by Kevin Cornell. Mac Barnett and Jory John will write the screenplay adaptation themselves, based on the novel which was published on January 13, and is the first in a planned four-book series. The book landed on the New York Times' children's middle grade best-seller list in its first week of release, with more than 200,000 copies currently in print.

The book follows the exploits of Miles Murphy, a middle school student who has a reputation as the school's best prankster in history. The young man is forced to relocate to the small town of Yawnee Valley, where he naturally expects to be the best prankster at his new school, until Miles realizes he has some unexpected competition. The Terrible Two is the first in a planned four-book series, with the second installment expected to be published in early 2016.

The Terrible Two was picked up by Amulet Books, an imprint of ABRAMS, for seven figures in an auction between seven different publishers. The rights have been sold in 26 different languages. No director or producers have been attached to the adaptation yet. Mac Barnett and Jory John are both experienced children's book authors, who first met in their 20s while working at a non-profit tutoring center called 826, which was founded by fellow author and screenwriter Dave Eggers (Promised Land, Where the Wild Things Are, Away We Go).