Lorenzo Di Bonaventura To Produce Adaptation Of The Secrets Of The Immortal Nicholas Flamel - The Next Harry Potter?

G.I. Joe: The Rise of the Cobra/Transformers producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura has signed a deal to produce a big screen adaptation of Michael Scott's six-part fantasy book series The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel. di Bonaventura tells Variety that "Michael's fantastic series is a natural evolution from Harry Potter," but will it come close to the popularity of the teen wizard series?

The series tells the story of fifteen-year-old twins Sophie and Josh Newman as they adventure across several continents with the immortal alchemyst Nicholas Flamel. With the exception of Josh and Sophie, all of the main human characters in the books are real. As for the mythological characters, Michael Scott has gone back to the original myths and legends. Here is the official description from the first book, The Alchemyst:

He holds the secret that can end the world. The truth: Nicholas Flamel was born in Paris on September 28, 1330. Nearly 700 years later, he is acknowledged as the greatest Alchemyst of his day. It is said that he discovered the secret of eternal life. The records show that he died in 1418. But his tomb is empty. The legend: Nicholas Flamel lives. But only because he has been making the elixir of life for centuries. The secret of eternal life is hidden within the book he protects—the Book of Abraham the Mage. It's the most powerful book that has ever existed. In the wrong hands, it will destroy the world. That's exactly what Dr. John Dee plans to do when he steals it. Humankind won't know what's happening until it's too late. And if the prophecy is right, Sophie and Josh Newman are the only ones with the power to save the world as we know it. Sometimes legends are true. And Sophie and Josh Newman are about to find themselves in the middle of the greatest legend of all time.

You can read a sample from the book on the author's official website. The first three books of the six-book series, The Alchemyst, The Magician and The Sorceress, are available in book stores right now, with the fourth book, The Necromancer, due on May 25th 2010. The last two books will be titled The Warlock and The Enchantress.

Last I heard, producer Mark Burnett bought the rights to the series in an auction many months before the first book was published, and that the project in development at New Line (aka Warner Bros) where screenwriter Eric Bress (Kyle XY) had been hired to pen the adaptation. It isn't clear if that draft will be abandoned now that Lorenzo di Bonaventura is on the project, although one would assume that would be the case. I'm assuming that Burnett/New Line's rights must have lapse. I'm sure we'll learn more once a screenwriter is hired for the project.