Lena Dunham to Adapt Refugee Drama ‘A Hope More Powerful Than the Sea’ for Steven Spielberg and J.J. Abrams

It's based on Melissa Fleming's nonfiction book of the same name.
Lena Dunham arrives at the HBO Golden Globes afterparty at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, in Beverly Hills, Calif75th Annual Golden Globe Awards - HBO Afterparty, Beverly Hills, USA - 07 Jan 2018
Lena Dunham
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“Girls” may be gone, but Lena Dunham is not. Variety reports that the actress and filmmaker is adapting “A Hope More Powerful Than the Sea: One Refugee’s Incredible Story of Love, Loss, and Survival” for a project being co-produced by Steven Spielberg and J.J. Abrams. One imagines that the movie based on Melissa Fleming’s nonfiction account of a Syrian refugee lost at sea will have a somewhat shorter title by the time it’s complete.

Fleming, who serves as chief spokesperson for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), wrote her book about Dooa Al Zamel, who fled Egypt via boat along with hundreds of other refugees (including her husband) en route to Sweden. After being shipwrecked and watching many of her fellow passengers die, she survived by cradling her two small children in her arms for days with the help of an inflatable ring.

Prior to creating and writing both “Girls” and “Camping” for HBO, Dunham wrote, directed, and starred in the film “Tiny Furniture”; she also co-wrote “Nobody Walks,” Ry-Russo Young’s independent drama starring John Krasinski, Olivia Thirlby, and Rosemarie DeWitt. Her next big-screen outing will be in Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” in which she plays Manson Family member Catherine “Gypsy” Share.

No other news about “A Hope More Powerful Than the Sea” has been announced, which is to say that it is currently seeking both a director and a cast. Paramount Pictures is expected to co-distribute it with Spielberg’s Amblin, which is co-producing alongside Abrams’ Bad Robot.

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