‘Paddington’ Director Paul King to Helm Fantasy ‘Time’s Fool’ at Fox Searchlight

David Heyman will produce adaptation of novel by Glyn Maxwell

Paul King Paddington
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Paul King, the director behind “Paddington” and “Paddington 2,” is set to develop and direct “Time’s Fool” at Fox Searchlight, the studio announced today.

King and “Paddington” co-writer Jon Croker will write the screenplay based on the novel “Time’s Fool: A Tale in Verse” by Glyn Maxwell. David Heyman, who most recently produced the new “Fantastic Beasts” film, will produce along with King and Croker.

The book “Time’s Fool,” originally published in 2000, is a magical love story about a young man who is trapped, cursed to ride a train for all eternity – except for one night every seven years, when the train pulls into his hometown, and he has only a few hours to unravel the nature of his curse.

“I’ve always been attracted to films which use magical ideas to explore real human emotions,” King said in a statement. “And so when, one rainy afternoon, Jon poured me a cup of tea and told me the story of ‘Time’s Fool,’ I was immediately hooked. It’s a captivating tale of wonder and heartbreak which sets the pulse racing and the imagination on fire. David, Jon and I will do our best not to mess it up.”

“When I first read Glyn’s book twelve years ago, I simply couldn’t put it down – it’s romantic yet realistic, funny yet sad, epic yet intimate, and above all, profoundly human,” Croker said. “Paul is so good at finding cinematic ways of expressing deep feelings that this felt like the perfect fit for his unique talents.”

Back in February, King was in talks to direct Disney’s live-action “Pinocchio” film that would be produced by Chris Weitz and Andrew Milano. King’s “Paddington 2” had a rare 100 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes and set an all-time review record on the site at the time of its release.

The film will be overseen by presidents of production for film and television David Greenbaum and Matthew Greenfield, SVP of production Katie Goodson-Thomas and creative executive Peter Spencer.

Heyman is represented by Alan Hergott of Bloom Hergott et al. Paul King is represented by Independent, WME and Nelson Davis. Jon Croker is represented by Independent, WME and Grandview. Glyn Maxwell is represented by Micheline Steinberg Associates.