Whomever that Oscar voter was, who cited being unable to pronouce Quvenzhané Wallis‘ name, as one of his reasons for not voting for her for the Best Actress Oscar, had better try a little harder, because she’s not going anywhere anytime soon.
Here’s the breaking news from Deadline:
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, with James Lassiter, Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith producing.
As many of you know, I’ve been singing Ms Wallis’ name for the part since Willow Smith walked away from it, so that she can spend some time away from the celebrity spotlight.
Soon after my proclaimation, Entertainment Weekly reported that rising star Quvenzhané Wallis was in the running to star in the Smith family’s long-in-development remake of the Broadway musical Annie, with Will Smith and his Overbrook Entertainment partners, Jada Pinkett Smith, and James Lassiter, producing the film, while Jay-Z (also a producer) scores it.
EW said that they learned of this via a Sony Pictures rep, who stressed that a decision had yet to be made.
It looks like one has been made, finally!
As I noted previously, Willow had likely outgrown the role anyway, and I went on to add that, with Willow Smith out, this would be a perfect opening for Wallis, who’ll be 10 years old by the time shooting starts this fall, and has the more baby-like, little girl features that the role calls for.
And, as I asked before, if not Ms Wallis, then what other young black actress is there in that age group, that’s hot enough right now, that she’d be showing up on Will and Jada’s radar? There aren’t many to choose from in the first place! And when you add the criteria that she’d likely need to be a girl with some notoriety (I really didn’t see them going with a complete unknown), the list gets even shorter.
It seemed like a no-brainer to me folks! And I’m glad that Will and Jada feel the same way!
There’s still a lot of work to be done – notably what actors and actresses will be cast around Wallis. But I’m definitely intrigued.