At least four different people had asked me "Hey, did you read The Ruins?" before I finally got off my ass and bought a copy of the Scott Smith novel. (He also wrote the fantastic A Simple Plan, both the book and the film.) The Ruins is about five young travelers who venture deep into an unforgiving rain forest in an effort to track down a missing guy, only to find themselves trapped by natives atop a creepy hill. And that's not even remotely the worst part. Turns out there's a new breed of foliage out there -- and it does very terrible things.

Once I finished the book I was pleased to realize that the movie version was already well into production. First-timer Carter Smith is in the director's chair; Smith is on adaptation duty; and the cast includes names like Shawn Ashmore, Jonathan Tucker, Jena Malone and Laura Ramsey. Release date for the DreamWorks / Paramount project is April 11, and while we don't have a trailer just yet, does have a trio of brand-new stills from the pic. (The first pic looks a LOT like how the book "looked" in my brain, so that's a good thing.) Once that trailer pops up, we'll be sure to let you know.

Oh, and the book? Good stuff. Here's hoping the studio lets Smith keep his finale intact.