Netflix continues to bet big on kids and family programming. The streaming service announced on Friday it optioned the rights to Annie Barrows’ illustrated children’s book series “Ivy & Bean” and plans to make them into movies.
The live-action films will be one-hour in length and geared toward family audiences. Kathy Waugh (“Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer,” “Molly of Denali”) is writing the movies.
More from Variety
“With a one-hour run-time, the ‘Ivy & Bean’ film series will still very much be movies the whole family can enjoy,” said Netflix’s Director of Family Features Naketha Mattocks. “Safe, fun and elevated comedy-adventures, they also have the wonderful benefit of giving the youngest members of the family an opportunity to see themselves as the star of their own story.”
“Ivy & Bean” follows two unlikely friends — the loud and fearless Bean, and the thoughtful and quiet Ivy. Yet the two discover that an adventure can reveal that even seemingly different people can become the best of friends. The series has 12 books, written by Barrows and illustrated by Sophie Blackall.
Kindle Entertainment, which is backed by Lionsgate TV, is producing the series. Melanie Stokes and Anne Brogan, whose credits include “The A List,” “Kiss Me First” and “Four Kids and It,” will also serve as producers.
Netflix has committed to expanding its slate of live-action and animated family films in recent years. Some of its recent offerings include “Feel the Beat,” directed by Elissa Down and starring Sofia Carson; “WWE’s The Main Event,” directed by Jay Karas and starring Seth Carr; and the 2019 comedy “Tall Girl,” directed by Nzingha Stewart and starring Ava Michelle. Upcoming titles include “Finding Ohana,” directed by Jude Weng; and “A Week Away,” directed by Roman White.
Best of Variety