Paddington duo Studiocanal and David Heyman are teaming with the Astrid Lindgren Company to develop a movie based on the classic Pippi Longstocking story. Jeffrey Clifford and Rosie Alison will also produce for Heyday.
Red-haired Longstocking is the main character in the eponymous series of children’s books by celebrated Swedish author Lindgren. She originated from bedside stories told to her daughter Karin about an anything-but-pious freckled little girl with boundless energy, strength and bravery.
The first three chapter books were published from 1945 to 1948, followed by three short stories and a number of picture book adaptations. They have been translated into 77 languages with more than 65 million copies sold world-wide.
There have been a number of film and TV series adaptations of the stories over the years, including Columbia Pictures’ 1988 movie The New Adventures Of Pippi Longstocking.
Harry Potter and Paddington producer Heyman said, “I am thrilled to collaborate with Thomas Gustafsson, Olle Nyman and their team at the Astrid Lindgren Company and our partners at Studiocanal on this film adaptation of the brilliant and timeless Pippi Longstocking. Pippi has endured and inspired families everywhere through her life force, strength of character and her irrepressible joie de vivre. Astrid Lindgren’s books have been translated around the globe for many years – a testament to her vision which we are determined to honour with a new film.”
Nils Nyman, grandchild of Astrid Lindgren and CEO at Astrid Lindgren Film commented, “In David Heyman, with his impressive track-record of bringing great literary works to the screen, together with Studiocanal we are confident that we have found a team that can understand and appreciate the full value of Pippi Longstocking and develop films that capture both the playfulness and the gravity in my grandmother’s works. We are therefore very excited and pleased to announce this collaboration. I’m especially thrilled to announce this now, when we’re in the midst of planning Pippi Longstocking’s upcoming 75th Anniversary in 2020 together with a global campaign in support of Save the Children’s important work for Children on the Move.”
In an interview with Today Michelle Obama recalled how the character was the first book love of her life: “I was really fascinated with this strong little girl that was the centre of everything. And she was almost magical in a way. I mean, she was stronger and tougher than anyone. She had superhuman strength.”
Additional collaborations between Studiocanal and Heyday include Marc Munden’s The Secret Garden, currently in post-production, and the Paddington animated TV series shooting in London.
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