Leonardo DiCaprio Gets in the YA Adaptation Game With ‘The Sandcastle Empire’
Seemingly sensing a previously untapped source of income, Leonardo DiCaprio has signed on to produce a YA adaptation of his very own. The actor and producer’s Appian Way banner is partnering with Paramount to back The Sandcastle Empire, a climate change-centric YA tale from author Kayla Olson. As with most YA properties, this one features a female lead and a dystopian future — surprise!
Variety reports that DiCaprio and Appian Way’s Jennifer Davisson are producing The Sandcastle Empire with Paramount. Based on an upcoming YA novel by Kayla Olson, the story takes place in a dystopian future (obviously), where climate change, flooding and overpopulation have sent Earth spiraling toward its final days. A group of radicals known as the Wolfpack conspire to overthrow the government, while a young woman named Eden escapes from one of the group’s camps. Eden teams up with a few fellow fugitives, embarking on a perilous mission to uncover the truth behind her father’s mysterious disappearance. Along the way, she realizes that she may be the key to dismantling the Wolfpack and saving humanity.
So…it’s your basic YA post-apocalyptic fantasy-action adventure, but this one has the potential to spread an important message with its focus on the dangers of climate chane. DiCaprio is a well-known environmental activist and advocate, which makes The Sandcastle Empire a bit more meaningful than your average YA franchise.
Publishing information for Olson’s book is currently unavailable, but with DiCaprio’s involvement in the big screen adaptation, it won’t be long before the novel hits — and subsequently flies off of — stands.