‘Where the Crawdads Sing’ Film Adaptation Taps Olivia Newman to Direct

Reese Witherspoon is producing based on Delia Owens’ book

Last Updated: July 21, 2020 @ 1:02 PM

The movie adaptation of “Where the Crawdads Sing” in development at Sony has found a director, “First Match” filmmaker Olivia Newman, an individual with knowledge of the project told TheWrap.

Newman will direct the film at Sony based on Delia Owens’ New York Times bestselling novel from 2018 and a screenplay from Oscar nominee Lucy Alibar.

Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine and Elizabeth Gabler’s 3000 Pictures are producing the film. Witherspoon and Lauren Neustadter are producing for Hello Sunshine, and Gabler, Erin Siminoff and Aislinn Dunster are overseeing the project for 3000 Pictures.

Set against the backdrop of the mid-20th century South, “Where the Crawdads Sing” centers on a young woman named Kya who, abandoned by her family, raises herself all alone in the marshes outside of her small town. However, when her former boyfriend is found dead, Kya is thrust into the spotlight, instantly branded by the local townspeople and law enforcement as the prime suspect for his murder. Equal parts haunting crime thriller and moving coming-of-age story, “Where the Crawdads Sing” explores our universal yearning for connection, formative first loves, and ultimately, how strong and resilient each of us is, no matter the obstacles standing in our way.

Newman made her debut feature “First Match” in 2018. The film premiered at SXSW and won the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature LUNA Gamechanger Award for Best Female Director of a first feature. The film starred Elvire Emanuelle, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Colman Domingo and eventually debuted on Netflix.

“Where the Crawdads Sing” was published by G.P. Putnam’s Son in August 2018 and spent 97 weeks on the Times bestseller list, selling more than 7 million copies worldwide.

Newman is represented by WME, Grandview and Jackoway Austen Tyerman Wertheimer Mandelbaum Morris Bernstein Trattner & Klein. Owens is represented by CAA and Russel Galen of Scovil Galen Ghosh Literary Agency. Hello Sunshine is represented by CAA and Hansen, Jacobson.

THR first reported the news of the director attachment.

The essential source
for entertainment insiders

Sign up for your
FREE TRIAL!