As previously reported, an Annie remake is in the works, produced by Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, Jay-Z and partners, and starring the Smith's youngest, Willow. No other casting has been revealed, and while for a time it seemed GLEE's Ryan Murphy was attached to the project, it appears those talks are off, according to published reports.
Ryan Murphy recently revealed to Deadline.com on the film, "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 American Horror got picked up. Willow is a certain age and you need a script by November. I didn't think I could do it. So now she's 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 in Detroit. I love him and Beyonce. I think they're amazing."
To read the full interview, click here.
Overbrook Entertainment partners James Lassiter, Ken Stovitz, Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith have formed a joint venture with Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter to develop and produce major motion pictures. Annie will be developed with Sony Pictures Entertainment and produced by Overbrook Entertainment and Carter.
The partnership began over dinner with Jada, Will, James Lassiter and JAY-Z, where they decided to co-invest in the now successful beauty products line Carol's Daughter. They continued this partnership as co-producers of the successful Broadway production Fela!, which earned a total of eleven Tony Award nominations in 2010.
Additionally, Willow Smith, managed by OE Executive Miguel Melendez, signed onto JAY-Z's record label, Roc Nation which produced her first single titled "Whip My Hair" has been certified Platinum. JAY-Z previously sampled the classic Annie song "It's the Hard Knock Life" in his chart-busting single "Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem)."
The Broadway musical "Annie" is based upon the popular comic strip and features songs with music by Charles Strouse and lyrics by Martin Charnin and a book by Thomas Meehan. The show originally opened on April 21, 1977, and immediately became a hit, winning seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical. In 1982, Columbia Pictures released a film adaptation directed by John Huston and starring Albert Finney, Carol Burnett, Bernadette Peters, Tim Curry, and Aileen Quinn as Annie.