By Simon Dang | The Playlist April 22, 2011 at 1:25AM
Scheduling Conflicts Ended Early Talks With Rooney Mara For Female Lead, Estella
With 2012 set to initiate celebrations of Charles Dickens' bicentenary, there's sure to be a few film projects being developed to take part in the festivities. One particular production, though, is already jumping out of the blocks as a standout: the adaptation of "Great Expectations" by Mike Newell which already has rising star Jeremy Irvine ("War Horse") as Pip and Helena Bonham Carter in talks for Miss Havisham.
Baz Bamigboye now reports that veteran actor Ralph Fiennes has been approached to play the mysterious Magwitch, and while "The Social Network" breakout star and the lead in the upcoming "The Girl With Dragon Tattoo" Rooney Mara was in early talks for the female lead, Estella, she had to withdraw due to a scheduling conflict -- could it be with Francesca Gregorini's Emanuel And The Truth About Fishes" which has a summer start" already pegged?
Adapted for the screen by Rowan Joffe ("The American"), the classic tale follows the story of orphan Pip (Irvine) across thirty years, as he encounters characters like escaped convict Magwitch and the shut-away Miss Havisham, while falling for the latter’s adopted daughter Estella. The novel has already seen multiple film adaptations including Alfonso Cuarón‘s 1998 modern reworking starring Ethan Hawke, Gwyneth Paltrow and Robert De Niro.
We did hear that funding on Newell's adaptation was potentially a stumbling block particularly with a three-part TV version recently greenlit by the BBC but we're sure, with the right cast in place, it'd be right on track. Other than that, lensing is set to begin this fall in preparation for release during the aforementioned Dickens bicentenary in 2012.