Spy School movie update

Hi everyone –

Lots of you have written to ask me about the potential Spy School movie.  Most of you have one of three questions, which I am going to answer here for everyone to see:

Q: Is the movie going to stick closely to the book?

A: That is my plan.  I have written the first draft of the screenplay.  So far, it stays close to the book, although since it is a movie and not a book, I have made some changes.  They’re not huge, and some might be quite funny, but they were necessary.  I’m sure that things will change, though.  For one thing, the script is a little too long, which probably means a scene or two will need to be cut – so be aware, there’s a good chance that something you like from the book might not be in the movie.

Q: When will the movie come out?

A: I have no idea.  I don’t even know IF it will ever come out.  The problem with getting a movie made is that it is very expensive.  So a lot of things need to fall into place for the movie to happen.  Here’s the progress so far:

I will certainly have to write more drafts of the movie.  I am waiting to get notes from the studio.  However, Fox is the company that bought the idea — but Fox is currently being purchased by Disney.  This is a massive corporate merger and it is slowing the project down.

The best I can say is that, if this movie did get made, the very earliest it could possibly be in theaters is fall 2020.  And that is an extreme long shot.

Q: When is it going to cast and can I try out for it?

A: I know, technically, that’s two questions, but I am always asked them together.  Anyhow, the simple answer is: I don’t know when it will cast, and the chances are probably very slim that you can try out for it.  Sorry.  I do not control casting.  In fact, I probably won’t have any say over casting at all.

I suppose there is a slight possibility that Fox/Disney might decide to have an open casting call for roles in the movie, in which case maybe anyone who wants to try out can do so, but I wouldn’t bet on it.

If there is an open casting call, I will certainly post about it here.


I know that’s not a ton of news, but it’s all I have.  Stay tuned to this site for more developments.

UPDATE JULY 22, 2019

Really, all this update is saying is that I have no new information.  But I’m adding it because many of you have been writing to me expressing disbelief that I still don’t have any news to report.  Well folks, that’s the way the movie industry works.  I wish I had more news.  Really. No one wants this movie to get made more than I do.  Except maybe my children.

517 thoughts on “Spy School movie update

  1. Tyler –

    Because 8-12 year-olds shouldn’t be watching Scarface or Full Metal Jacket. People who are 123 are welcome to watch whatever they want. But I need to make sure my books are appropriate for my youngest readers, not my oldest readers.

  2. Tyler –

    I have only been to festivals in the USA. I have been invited to festivals in other countries, but that is a very long way to go for a festival. I have never been on the Ellen show.

  3. Hello! I had a question, will you try and make the characters look as close as possible to the way you described them in the book? Especially Erica!!!

  4. Atlantis –

    Honestly, I think that we should be hiring the best actors, regardless of race, to play these characters. (I don’t really specify race much in the book anyhow.)

  5. In a future spy school book if Cyrus tells Ben to do something that he doesn’t want to do he should say “Surely you can’t be serious” and Cyrus should say “I am serious and don’t call me Shirley”

  6. I really hope the movie doesn’t ruin the books for me but I’m excited to see it! Spy School is my favorite series and Stuart Gibbs is my favorite author! 🙂

  7. Tyler –

    Quoting Airplane in my book would really be stealing jokes. Plus, that joke works far better audibly than when written.

  8. Do you have a estimate to when the next books is going to be out? Just finished reading British Invasion for the second time. I love the series. Can’t wait for a possible movie!

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