No pressure unknown screenwriter Ed Whitworth, but everyone at Warner Bros is counting on you. Again, no pressure... but a lot of jobs are at stake.

With Harry Potter quidditching off into the sunset, there's a big hole in the Warner Bros release schedule for a new multi-part, bazillion dollar franchise. Said hole will be filled by The Lost Years of Merlin, the first in T.A. Barron's series of fantasy novels. Merlin concerns everything from the wizard's homeless boyhood years to becoming King Arthur's mentor. Now we'll finally get to see Merlin in his 20s, working a shitty job, playing medieval XBOX and following his dream of being a famous lute player.

Curiously, the suits at Warner Bros chose Whitworth, a script reader for Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo Productions, to pen the big budget, hugely important tentpole movie. He was chosen on the strength of a spec script he wrote about the life of General Colin Powell, which made the rounds this year. Whitworth told his bosses at Harpo he was going on "haitus." What? If there is ever an occasion to order your boss a giant middle finger cake with the words, "I'm Writing Merlin Now, Assholes" on it this is it. (Hollywood Reporter)