Elizabeth Banks to produce and star in live-action adaptation of ‘The Magic School Bus’

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Elizabeth Banks appears in 2019’s “Charlie’s Angels.” [Sony photo]

Elizabeth Banks is jumping on board Universal’s live-action adaptation of “The Magic School Bus,” who will produce the movie as well as star as adventurous teacher Ms. Frizzle, according to Variety.

Based on the Scholastic book series by author Joanna Cole, “The Magic School Bus” was a long-running 1990s animated TV series starring Lily Tomlin as the voice of Ms. Frizzle, who took her class on field trips in a magical transforming school bus that could morph into a spaceship, submarine, airplane and more.

The animated sequel “The Magic School Bus Rides Again,” starring Kate McKinnon as Ms. Frizzle’s sister, Fiona, premiered in 2017 on Netflix.

Banks will produce the film with Max Handelman for Brownstone Productions, as well as Scholastic Entertainment’s president and chief strategy officer Iole Lucchese and senior vice president and general manager Caitlin Friedman, as well as Marc Platt and Adam Siegel for Marc Platt Productions. Alison Small will executive produce for Brownstone Productions.

“We are delighted to bring to life the iconic Ms. Frizzle and her zest for knowledge and adventure in a fresh new way that inspires the next generation of kids to explore science and supports the dedicated teachers who help make science real and accessible for young learners every day,” Lucchese said in a statement.

Ryan Christians from Marc Platt Productions will oversee production with Sara Scott and Lexi Barta from Universal Pictures.

As Variety notes, Banks has a close relationship to Universal after directing and co-starring in 2015’s “Pitch Perfect 2,” which was a critical and commercial hit. Banks, who helmed and co-starred in last year’s remake of “Charlie’s Angels,” also is set to direct and star in an “Invisible Woman” remake for the studio.



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