Sony Pictures and Overbrook Entertainment have found their title character for Annie. They’ve set Oscar nominated Beasts Of The Southern Wild star Quvenzhane Wallis to play the role, in a film to be directed and produced by Will Gluck. Also producing are James Lassiter, Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith producing through Overbrook, with Shawn “Jay Z” Carter, Jay Brown and Tyran “Ty Ty” Smith through Marcy Media. That was the role that Willow Smith was going to play, but she grew out of it during the film’s long period of development.
The contemporized re-imagining of the Broadway musical will shoot later this year for holiday 2014 release. Gluck, the helmer who directed Easy A and Friends With Benefits for Sony-based Screen Gems, signed on last month. Gluck has been revising a screenplay written by Emma Thompson and rewritten by Aline Brosh McKenna based on the musical and its book by Thomas Meehan, music by Charles Strouse, lyrics by Martin Charnin. That’s based on the Little Orphan Annie comic strip.
Wallis was up for Best Actress–youngest ever in that category–for her cute as a button portrayal as Hushpuppy in Beasts Of The Southern Wild. She was six when she made that film and is now nine, but is even more adorable, if that is possible. She’s repped by ICM Partners