Our last post on this, in August 2011, announced that Brit actress/writer Emma Thompson had been hired to pen the screenplay of the updated adaptation of the Broadway classic musical Annie, with Willow Smith in the title role, and poppa and momma Smith producing under their Overbrook Entertainment banner, in a joint venture with Jay-Z, who will also produce the soundtrack for the film.
Prior to that news, Glee creator, Ryan Murphy, dropped out of contention for the writing/directing job, despite being poppa Smith’s top choice for the gig.
Today brings word that Aline Brosh McKenna, the screenwriter for The Devil Wears Prada, and We Bought A Zoo, has been brought on to rewrite the screenplay for the project, which is still in development.
McKenna will reportedly use both the Broadway musical and the comic strips that first introduced Annie, as sources for the screenplay adaptation – a story that we last heard will be set in Detroit, Michigan.
No director has officially been attached yet.
When Emma Thompson was on-board, it was reported that the studio wanted a script delivered by November (last year), which led me to think that the project would be going in front of cameras sooner than we thought; almost a year later, it doesn’t look that way.
But it’s obviously not a dead project either. Although all this shifting – from Ryan Murphy to Emma Thompson to Aline Brosh McKenna – does make me wonder what’s going on behind closed doors that we aren’t aware of.