According to Variety Jeremy Irvine, the young actor chosen by Steven Spielberg to lead his WWII epic War Horse, is in talks to play the lead character of Pip in Mike Newell’s adaptation of the classic Dickens novel Great Expectations.
The site also mentions Helena Bonham Carter, who recently received a Best Supporting Actress nomination at the Oscars for The King’s Speech, is in talks to play Miss Havisham.
The script, which is being written by Rowan Joffe (28 Weeks Later, The American) follows the orphan Pip (Irvine) across the span of thirty years as he rises to wealth, deserts his true friends, and becomes humbled by his own arrogance. It also features one of Dickens’s more colorful characters in literature: Miss Havasham. She is a wealthy spinster who takes Pip on as a companion and whom Pip suspects is his benefactor. Although she has often been portrayed in film versions as very elderly, Dickens’s own notes indicate that she is only in her mid-fifties, so Helena Bonham Carter seems perfect for the role.
If everything comes together filming is expected to start later this year for a 2012 release.