Ava DuVernay and Disney are like chocolate and peanut butter — two great tastes that taste great together. The Selma director and the House of Mouse have been circling one another for a while, as she was courted to direct Marvel’s Black Panther (a job that ultimately went to Creed helmer Ryan Coogler). J.J. Abrams told Nerdist that he would like to see DuVernay direct a Star Wars film down the line. But before DuVernay makes a journey to the galaxy far, far away, she will be taking a trip to the wild worlds envisioned by Madeleine L’Engle. Confirming news from earlier this month, Deadline reports that DuVernay has signed on to direct an adaptation of L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time.
Much like the novel’s heroine, Meg Murray, Ava DuVernay won’t be going it alone on her journey to bring this story to the big screen. Oscar-winning Frozen writer and co-director Jennifer Lee will be penning the script, which sounds like a match made in heaven in our book.
The Newbery Medal-winning 1962 novel follows aforementioned teenager Meg Murray, her hyperintelligent brother Charles Wallace, and her classmate Calvin O’Keefe as they voyage across space and time to find their scientist father, who went missing while working on a mysterious project known as the tesseract. This tesseract isn’t secretly an Infinity Stone, though; rather, it is a fifth-dimensional phenomenon that allows people to travel across the universe to faraway planets — which is precisely what our heroes do.
Disney has been trying to make a feature film adaptation of A Wrinkle in Time since it acquired the rights in 2010. Even before that, though, ABC produced a TV movie version in 2004, about which L’Engle said, “I expected it to be bad, and it is.” Considering DuVernay’s filmmaking and storytelling pedigree, though, I suspect this new version would have excited the late author.
DuVernay is also reportedly circling another sprawling sci-fi film entitled Intelligent Life. Scripted by Jurassic World‘s Colin Trevorrow and Derek Connolly and set to star The Force Awakens‘ Lupita Nyong’o, tells the story of a UN worker whose job is to serve as mankind’s liaison in the event of extraterrestrial contact. Naturally, said worker meets a mysterious woman with whom he falls in love, and she just so happens to be an alien herself.
Nerdist has reached out to Disney for confirmation, but has yet to hear back at time of publication.
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Image: Farrar, Straus & Giroux