Warner Bros. picks up 'Heap' of books

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With "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" breaking boxoffice records, Warner Bros. Pictures -- on the lookout for its next franchise -- has picked up the rights to another seven-book children's fantasy series, "Septimus Heap."

Written by U.K. author Angie Sage, the series revolves around two babies that are switched at birth: one a boy who discovers his birthright as the seventh son of a seventh son, and who is destined to become a powerful wizard; the other a girl who is fated to become a princess.

So far, three books have been published -- "Magyk," "Flyte" and "Physik" -- which have become known for their clever use of charms and potions as well as for their sense of humor.

Published in March 2005 by HarperCollins Children's Books, "Magyk" debuted at No. 3 on the New York Times best-seller list and moved to No. 1 in its second week on sale. The subsequent books have been published yearly since, and more than 1 million books have been sold in the U.S. so far. The series also is a huge international success, having been translated into 28 languages.

"Septimus Heap: Magyk" will be produced by Karen Rosenfelt ("The Devil Wears Prada") with Sage as executive producer. Courtenay Valenti is overseeing for Warners.

Sage is repped by literary agent Eunice McMullen. HarperCollins is repped by the Gotham Group.
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