Brit director Joe Wright is stepping back into period garb to direct “The Lifeboat,” reports Deadline. In this film version of Charlotte Rogan’s celebrated debut novel, Anne Hathaway is attached to star as Grace Winter, a young widow on trial for murder and who survives her husband on a sinking ocean liner and ends up marooned on a lifeboat in 1914. The number of people on board leads to a moral question of who stays, and who goes.
Focus Features and Working Title acquired rights to the film, which Hathaway is also in talks to produce. “Castaway” scribe William Broyles Jr., fittingly, is writing this script and executive-producing. Working Title’s Tim Beva and Eric Fellner — who backed Wright’s 2007 Best Picture nominee “Atonement” — and Liza Chasin are producing alongside Film 360.
Meanwhile, Joe Wright’s JM Barrie update “Pan,” pushed back from a Summer 2015 release, hits October 9 via Warner Bros. “The Lifeboat,” when it sets sail, seems yet another example of a period picture that fits comfortably in Wright’s wheelhouse. While he has dabbled in big studio productions (“The Soloist”) and genre outings (“Hanna”), his best films have been majestic, classical lit adaptations: “Pride and Prejudice,” “Anna Karenina” and “Atonement,” all Oscar nominees.