Thea Sharrock (“Me Before You”) is in early talks with Disney to direct an adaptation of “The One and Only Ivan,” a Newbury Medal-winning by Katherine Applegate about a silverback gorilla who takes care of a baby elephant while living in a cage at a shopping mall, TheWrap has learned.
If Sharrock signs on, she will become the fourth female director on Disney’s upcoming film slate — making up for a 2017 slate whose directors are all male.
She would join Ava DuVernay, Niki Caro, and Meg LeFauve, who will respectively be releasing “A Wrinkle in Time,” “Mulan,” and “Gigantic” in 2018. Disney is also planning to sign a female director for Marvel Studios’ “Captain Marvel” in 2019, while Jennifer Lee is expected to return to co-direct the sequel to “Frozen,” which does not have a release date set.
“The One and Only Ivan” is part of a recent venture by Disney into film adaptations of children’s books. Previous book-based releases include “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” in 2014 and “The BFG” in 2016, with the aforementioned “A Wrinkle in Time” on tap for next year.
Allison Shearmur, producer of “Cinderella,” is attached to produce this project.
Sharrock is represented by CAA.