Nick Hornby, Reese Witherspoon Team Up for “Wild” Adaptation

By Kirsten Anderson Uncategorized

Reese Witherspoon will hit the trails, with an assist from Nick Hornby.

Hey, take a hike–well, that’s what Reese Witherspoon will be doing when she stars in the adaptation of Cheryl Strayed’s memoir “Wild.” (Yes, it was an obvious–and bad–joke, but I felt I couldn’t pass it up.) According to Deadline, Witherspoon’s Pacific Standard production company and River Road Entertainment will produce, with Nick Hornby writing the screenplay.

Here’s how they describe the book on Amazon:

A powerful, blazingly honest memoir: the story of an eleven-hundred-mile solo hike that broke down a young woman reeling from catastrophe—and built her back up again.

At twenty-two, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother’s death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed. Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life: to hike the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State—and to do it alone. She had no experience as a long-distance hiker, and the trail was little more than “an idea, vague and outlandish and full of promise.” But it was a promise of piecing back together a life that had come undone.

Strayed faces down rattlesnakes and black bears, intense heat and record snowfalls, and both the beauty and loneliness of the trail. Told with great suspense and style, sparkling with warmth and humor, Wild vividly captures the terrors and pleasures of one young woman forging ahead against all odds on a journey that maddened, strengthened, and ultimately healed her.

Sounds like something that would be an Oprah Book Club selection–and it was earlier this year!

(Interesting note: If the author’s name was Cheryl Wild and the book was titled “Strayed,” it would still all make sense, wouldn’t it?)

Here’s what Witherspoon had to say about having Hornby on board:

“Nick’s innate blend of humanity and humor are a perfect match for Cheryl’s raw emotional memoir. I look forward to collaborating with both of these talented writers to create a film full of honesty, adventure and self discovery.”

Hornby also commented:

“I loved Cheryl Strayed’s memoir. It’s moving, funny, painful and brave, and the moment I’d finished it I wanted someone to let me have a go at adapting it, because it was clear to me that it could make a wonderful movie. I’m thrilled to be given the chance; the fact that this chance was given to me by Reese Witherspoon, a great actress who feels exactly the same way about the book as I do, makes this project all the more exciting.”

Hornby has had a number of his own novels adapted for the screen, most notably “About a Boy,” “High Fidelity,” and “Fever Pitch.” He’s not new to being the adapter, though–he recently wrote the screenplay for the adaptation of Colm Toibin’s novel “Brooklyn.”

Witherspoon will next be seen in “Devil’s Knot” in 2013 and then has a number of projects in various stages of development.



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