J.J. Abrams to Produce NYT's Fifth Avenue Mystery

A teeny little feature in the Times’ Home & Garden section about parents who turned their house into a maze of hidden puzzles, games and treasures for their four pre-teen kids will be a movie. J.J. Abrams (producer of Lost, Cloverfield, etc.) has signed on to produce, and two scribes (neither is the article’s author, Penelope Green) will whip up a script, according to Reuters. The premise seems a little, uh, Chronicles of Narnia-ish (closets leading to other worlds and all) and maybe a little like Jumanji too. But as long as they don’t hire Robin Williams for the movie, Mr. Abrams should do alright at the box office.

The Times feature, which ran Thursday and was written by reporter Penelope Green, describes an Upper East Side luxury apartment on Fifth Avenue that the occupants had redesigned to include hidden compartments, messages, puzzles, poems, codes and games for their four preteen kids.

The parents, Steven Klinsky and Maureen Sherry, are Wall Street financial experts and purchased the 4,200-square-foot, 1920s co-op with views of Central Park in 2003 for $8.5 million. Soon after, they hired young architectural designer Eric Clough, who devised an elaborately clever “scavenger hunt” that he built into the apartment. The puzzles involve dozens of historical figures, a fictional book and a soundtrack.