Ellen DeGeneres, Disney to Adapt Kids Fantasy Book 'Castle Hangnail' (Exclusive)

The children's book is by Ursula Vernon, who won awards for her webcomic "Digger."
Courtesy of Penguin

Disney has optioned the movie rights to Castle Hangnail, a children’s book by Ursula Vernon, for an adaptation to be produced by Ellen DeGeneres.

DeGeneres will produce with Jeff Kleeman, her partner at A Very Good Production banner.

The book tells of a 12-year-old witch who shows up at Castle Hangnail because it needs a new master or it will be decommissioned by the bureaucratic Board of Magic, and its many minions, such as a hypochondriac fish and a letter ‘Q’ averse minotaur, dispersed into the world. She projects confidence as she tackles the series of tasks she must complete in order to be approved by the board, but underneath her confident exterior are several simmering secrets, including one about her true identity. 

The tome was published by Dial Books in April.

Exec Sam Dickerman is overseeing for the studio.

Vernon has won awards for her webcomic Digger and previously authored a children’s book series titled Dragonbreath.

DeGeneres and Kleeman are busy in the television world but Hangnail is their second notable move on the movie side and keeps their feet firmly in the fantasy field. Earlier this year the duo set up Uprooted, the novel from Temeraire author Naomi Novik, for Warner Bros.

DeGeneres, repped by ICM Partners, is already working with Disney with Pixar’s Finding Dory.