Guillermo Del Toro loves new talent. He likes to take newcomers under his wing and offer them a chance to work with him. Beasts of the Southern Wild co-writer Lucy Alibar is his latest student. He’ll be producing her script for The Secret Garden. How sweet is that?
According to Deadline, Universal Pictures beat out four studios today and acquired a pitch for a new film version of the Frances Hodgson Burnett novel. Alibar will write the script, and Del Toro will produce along with Mark Johnson, who previously worked with him on Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark.
Before you get any ideas, Del Toro will not be directing. He’s way too busy with a bunch of other projects including Pacific Rim, Crimson Peak and Pinocchio. But Del Toro will work closely with Alibar to create the magical world of The Secret Garden. That kind of thing is right up his alley, and Alibar has some experience as well. Beasts of the Southern Wild was set in a fantasy world as well.
In the novel, an orphaned girl is sent to live with her reclusive uncle and discovers a hidden garden containing magical secrets. This project will stand on its own, and is not a remake of any other screen adaptations that we’ve seen in the past. Word is that it might be set in the American South at the turn of the 20th Century.
Here’s a summary of the story:
Two cousins–one motherless, the other an orphan–are so monstrously spoiled that no one can stand them and they can hardly stand themselves. With the help of a boy of the moors and some natural magic, they discover an abandoned garden and return it to abundance. As the garden grows the children grow–into their own better selves.
Children? Magic? This has Del Toro written all over it, don’t you agree?