Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Jada Pinkett Smith's Fish Mooney Will Return to 'Gotham' Streets with a New Look & Tougher Than Ever Jada Pinkett Smith's Fish Mooney Will Return to 'Gotham' Streets with a New Look & Tougher Than Ever Mo'Nique Presents Email Evidence That Shows She Was in Contention for the Role of Cookie in 'Empire' Mo'Nique Presents Email Evidence That Shows She Was in Contention for the Role of Cookie in 'Empire' Films & TV Series Coming to (and Leaving) Netflix's Streaming Library In May Films & TV Series Coming to (and Leaving) Netflix's Streaming Library In May James Earl Jones and Cicely Tyson Will Share a Stage Again in a Revival of 'The Gin Game' James Earl Jones and Cicely Tyson Will Share a Stage Again in a Revival of 'The Gin Game' Watch: Michael Jackson’s Movie Career Summed Up in 7 Minutes Watch: Michael Jackson’s Movie Career Summed Up in 7 Minutes Watch Trailer for Jordan Davis Documentary, '3 1/2 Minutes.' Coming to HBO This Fall Watch Trailer for Jordan Davis Documentary, '3 1/2 Minutes.' Coming to HBO This Fall With Cannes Looming, Here's a List of African Diaspora Films That Have Won the Palme d'Or (Have You Seen Them?) With Cannes Looming, Here's a List of African Diaspora Films That Have Won the Palme d'Or (Have You Seen Them?) Meet the Cast of 'Desperate Housewives - Africa' + the Characters from the American Original They Each Play (Premieres in 2 Weeks) Meet the Cast of 'Desperate Housewives - Africa' + the Characters from the American Original They Each Play (Premieres in 2 Weeks) Netflix's 'The Getdown' Directed by Baz Luhrman Has Found Its Female Lead Netflix's 'The Getdown' Directed by Baz Luhrman Has Found Its Female Lead Meet the 3 Leads for the Next 'Star Wars' Movie (John Boyega Is One of Them) + Watch New Teaser Meet the 3 Leads for the Next 'Star Wars' Movie (John Boyega Is One of Them) + Watch New Teaser Quentin Tarantino's 'H8ful Eight' Gets a Teaser Trailer (Samuel L. Jackson, Belinda Owino) Quentin Tarantino's 'H8ful Eight' Gets a Teaser Trailer (Samuel L. Jackson, Belinda Owino) Trailer: Pilot Project 'First Gen' (The Trials and Tribulations of Being a First Gen Nigerian-American) Trailer: Pilot Project 'First Gen' (The Trials and Tribulations of Being a First Gen Nigerian-American) 'Tales of the Grim Sleeper,' on Serial Killer Who Murdered Black Women for 25 Years, Debuts April 27 on HBO 'Tales of the Grim Sleeper,' on Serial Killer Who Murdered Black Women for 25 Years, Debuts April 27 on HBO Apparently, Many of You Aren't Pleased With the "All-New" 'Single Ladies'... What's Going on? Apparently, Many of You Aren't Pleased With the "All-New" 'Single Ladies'... What's Going on? What to Expect in Season 2 of 'Empire' (Less Opulence; Spike Lee May Direct, Oprah May Guest-Star, More) What to Expect in Season 2 of 'Empire' (Less Opulence; Spike Lee May Direct, Oprah May Guest-Star, More) Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? Buzzfeed Investigates Why Was Janet Hubert (Aunt Viv) Really Replaced on 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'? Buzzfeed Investigates Whoopi Goldberg & Daughter Alex Martin Enter Reality TV Series Ring Whoopi Goldberg & Daughter Alex Martin Enter Reality TV Series Ring Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Aaron McGruder Finally Explains Why He Left 'The Boondocks' Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Netflix Explains Why It Doesn't Always Have That Film Or TV Show You Really Want To See (Video) Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie... Tichina Arnold Says She Talked To Martin Lawrence About Doing A 'Martin' Movie...

Updates On Smith Family "Annie" Project (Writer, Dates, Location)

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act August 6, 2011 at 3:54AM

The last word on this, in June, was that Brit actress/writer Emma Thompson was "in contention" 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.
3

The last word on this, in June, was that Brit actress/writer Emma Thompson was "in contention" 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.

Well, 2 months later, Murphy himself confirms that Emma Thompson is no longer "in contention" and actually has been hired to pen the screenplay, though it doesn't look like she'll also direct.

Murphy let the news slip, telling Deadline:

"They are doing a movie version and I loved the idea that Jay Z was going to do the music. I met with Jay and talked to him about it. I wanted to write the script and direct it. And then (Murphy's new TV project) American Horror got picked up and Willow is a certain age and you need a script by November. I didn't think I could do it. So now she's (Pinkett Smith) got Emma Thompson, who is 50 million times better than me. Love her. I wish I could have had the time to do it. The thing that was the biggest turn on for me was Jay. We talked about how we were going to set it (Annie) in Detroit."

So, we learn a few things from that quote: First, yes, Emma Thompson is onboard; second, they want a script delivered by November, which means that this could be going in front of cameras sooner than we think; and lastly, they are setting the story in Detroit, Michigan. The original took place in New York City I believe.

No director has officially been attached yet.

Thompson's credits are impressive - nominated multiple times for Academy Awards, winning twice in the 1990s - one for Best Actress in 1992 for her performance in Howards End, and the other for Best Adapted Screenplay for penning the Sense and Sensibility script in 1995.

This article is related to: Coming Soon, FYI, casting


Shadow & ActNewsletter