Rebecca Thomas (“Electrick Children”) is in early talks to direct the upcoming live-action adaptation of “The Little Mermaid,” starring Chloe Grace Moretz (“If I Stay,” “The Clouds of Sils Maria”). Sofia Coppola was previously attached to direct the feature, but in June the Oscar winner dropped out of the Universal Pictures and Working Title project.
This version of “The Little Mermaid” returns to the story’s roots — Hans Christian Anderson’s grim, heartbreaking fairy tale about an ill-fated mermaid, though it’s uncertain just how much the script will borrow from its depressing source material.
The screenplay had already gone through Kelly Marcel (“Fifty Shades of Grey,””Saving Mr. Banks”) and Abi Morgan (“Suffragette,” “The Iron Lady”) before being rewritten by Caroline Thompson (“Corpse Bride,” “The Nightmare Before Christmas”). Now Richard Curtis (“About Time,” “War Horse”) is listed as the writer on IMDb. It’s unfortunate that a female screenwriter won’t be credited for the script, but at least Coppola was replaced with another female director.
Thomas is also behind the latest big-screen adaptation of a John Green novel, “Looking for Alaska,” which is currently in pre-production and is rumored to star Elle Fanning. Sarah Polley (“Take This Waltz,” “Away from Her”) penned the script. Green wrote the source material for 2014 mega hit “The Fault in Our Stars,” as well as this year’s “Paper Towns.”