UA Options Ranger’s Apprentice

United Artists has paid seven figures to option the film rights for children’s literature series “Ranger’s Apprentice” says The Hollywood Reporter.

The fantasy series by Australian author John Flanagan follows the adventures of an orphan boy named Will who becomes an apprentice ranger and fights to keep the mythical kingdom of Araluen safe from invaders, traitors and other dangers with the help of his master Halt.

Flanagan was an ad copy writer who began writing the book to inspire his bored son to read. The first book, “The Ruins of Gorlan,” was released in Australia in November 2004 and seven months later in the U.S. Seven books have been released to date.

Paul Haggis (“Crash,” “Million Dollar Baby”) was in discussions to adapt and direct the first movie of the series, but those negotiations were halted by the writers strike. With UA having independently settled an interim agreement with the WGA this weekend however, the project will now be unaffected by the strike’s length.