Sep 12, 2022 - News

"Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site" comes to life

A real excavator in the illustrated cover of a beloved children's book
Scooping gravel, dirt and sand, Excavator shapes the land. Screenshot: Caterpillar

Equipment maker Caterpillar, which announced this summer it would move its headquarters from Illinois to North Texas, used its products to bring to life the beloved children's book "Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site."

Why it matters: If you have a toddler in your life, you likely know how popular this book series is. The "Goodnight, Goodnight" series has sold more than 5 million copies, and the original spawned a multitude of sequels, spinoffs and branded products.

The latest: In a video narrated by Matt Dillon, the illustrated construction site blends with real Caterpillar machines, moving loads both big … and small.

Background: Author Sherri Duskey Rinker tells Axios that the original book was inspired by bedtime stories she told her two sons, both of whom loved trucks and construction equipment.

  • "One night as I was putting my head down on the pillow and drifting off to sleep, I shot up like I'd been struck by lightning. I thought, Oh my gosh, I think this idea could be a book!"
  • Three months later the author had a contract. The book debuted on the New York Times Best Sellers list and stayed there for five years.
  • She was invited to the set as Caterpillar filmed the live-action version of the book, and she got to drive every machine on the lot.

What they're saying: "Seeing all these trucks in full-size scale, you can't even imagine," the author tells Axios. "This moment is not lost on me. It's the most surreal, exciting thing."

  • She adds: "I don't usually get starstruck, but, oh my gosh, those trucks!"

Worthy of your time: Watch the video.

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