Jonathan Levine ("The Wackness") is attached to direct Universal's "Little Girl Lost," the studio announced on Tuesday.
Michael Bacall ("Scott Pilgrim vs. the World") will adapt Richard Aleas' hardboiled crime novel, which was a finalist for both the Edgar Allan Poe Award and the Shamus Award.
The story follows an NYU dropout turned private detective who investigates the death of a stripper who happens to be his high school sweetheart.
Marc Platt and Adam Siegel will produce for Marc Platt Productions, while Mason Novick ("Juno") will also produce.
Aleas is the pen name of Charles Ardai, the Edgar Award-winning author and founder of Hard Case Crime, which published the novel in 2004. A 2007 sequel, "Songs of Innocence," was called "an instant classic" by the Washington Post in addition to being named one of the best books of the year by Publisher's Weekly.
Universal's exec VP of production, Jeff Kirschenbaum, will oversee the project for the studio.
Levine recently wrapped his third film, the Seth Rogen-Joseph Gordon-Levitt dramedy "Live With It" (formerly "I'm With Cancer"), but his excellent first film, "All the Boys Love Mandy Lane," is still awaiting release, unfortunately.
Levine is represented by CAA and manager Ragna Nervik, while WME represents Bacall.