And she’s in some major A-list company, too: Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Jay-Z are all signed on to produce the film. They’ve been on the hunt for a star to play the eponymous 11-year-old orphan with the heart of gold ever since the Smith’s daughter Willow Smith dropped out of the film.
Director Will Gluck (Friends with Benefits, Easy A) is currently re-writing the film’s screenplay, which has already been touched by some golden fingers: Actress and screenwriter Emma Thompson (Sense and Sensibility) penned the first draft, which was then handed off to The Devil Wears Prada scribe Aline Brosh McKenna.
“Quvenzhané Wallis is a true star and we believe her portrayal as Annie will make her a true worldwide star,” said Hannah Minghella, president of production at Columbia Pictures, in a statement. “She is an extraordinary young talent with an amazing range, not only as an actress but as a singer and dancer, and we can’t wait for audiences to further discover her.” The film is pegged for release at the end of 2014. SOURCE