Production has begun on “Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase,” a feature film based on the popular best-selling book series, and starring “IT” star Sophia Lillis. Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, A Very Good Production and Red 56 began principal photography this week on the film, which will bring Nancy drew back to the big-screen. Production is based in Georgia, so if you’re around the city of Monroe, keep an eye out for any feisty teens with a passion for solving mysteries.

As for the story, the film will focus on Nancy Drew (Sophia Lillis) a smart high schooler who stumbles upon the haunting of a local home. A bit of an outsider struggling to fit into her new surroundings, Nancy and her pals set out to solve the mystery, while hopefully making some new friends and establishing their place in the community. The film is being directed by Award-winning director Katt Shea (Poison Ivy) working from a script by the screenwriting team of Nina Fiore and John Herrera (The Handmaid’s Tale, The Vampire Diaries).

Ellen DeGeneres, Jeff Kleeman (The Man From U.N.C.L.E.) and Chip Diggins (A Walk In The Woods) are producing the film, with Wendy S. Williams (The Fate Of The Furious) serving as executive producer.

Joining Lillis on-screen are Zoe Renee (The Quad) and Mackenzie Graham (SYFY’s upcoming The Purge), they will play the roles of Drew’s BFFs, George and Bess, respectively. Laura Slade Wiggins (Shameless)
portrays Helen, a highschool mean-girl who reluctantly joins forces with Nancy to help solve the mystery. The film spotlights True Blood star Sam Trammell as Nancy’s father named Carson; Linda Lavin (Alice) as Flora, the owner of the haunted house; and Andrea Anders (Joey, The Stepford Wives, Better Off Ted) as Nancy’s Aunt Hannah.

Also featured in the film are Jay DeVon Johnson (Vice Principals), Andrew Matthew Welch (Taylor Tate’s upcoming Ma), Jon Briddell (The Resident), Josh Daugherty (We Were Soldiers), Evan Castelloe (Queen Sugar) and Jesse C. Boyd (Hap and Leonard).

As the inspiration for Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase, Nancy Drew has intrigued and entertained audiences for nearly 90 years in books, comics, films and video games. An icon in American mystery novels, the character initially appeared in 1930, evolving through each incarnation to reflect the look, sensibilities and technologies of the times. Nancy Drew books have sold more than 100 million copies, and have been translated to accommodate young readers across the planet. A number of feature films and television series have featured the character, starting with Nancy Drew … Detective in 1938. The character last appeared on film in the 2007 release, Nancy Drew, which starred Emma Roberts.

Warner Bros. Pictures hasn’t set a release date for the film just yet, but the film is expected to release in 2019. The film would make a great YA release around Halloween, but we will have to see how crowded the box-office gets before then.