Dakota Johnson, the Hollywood actor best known for the Fifty Shades film series, will feature in Netflix’s Persuasion, an adaptation of Jane Austen’s last novel by the same name, the streaming giant announced on Wednesday.
The film will be helmed by debutant director Carrie Cracknell. Cracknell has previously been nominated for the Tony Awards, and has helmed Broadway’s Sea Wall/ A Life on Broadway starring Jake Gyllenhall and Tom Sturridge.
According to Netflix, the film will take “a modern, witty approach”. It revolves around Anne Elliot, an nonconforming woman with modern sensibilities, who lives with her snobbish family on the brink of bankruptcy. When Frederick Wentworth, the dashing one she once sent away, returns into her life, Anne must choose between putting the past behind her or listening to her heart when it comes to second chances.
While Johnson will play the protagonist, the rest of the cast is yet to be announced.
Persuasion will be adapted to screen by Ron Bass and Alice Victoria, while “remaining true” to the original story.
It will be produced by Andrew Lazar and Christina Weiss Lurie. As a partner project with MRC, it will be executive produced by Elizabeth Cantillon via her untitled MRC Film Romance label, Michael Constable, and David Fliegel.
The film’s production is expected to begin from May.
Almost all of Austen’s novels have been adapted to popular screen versions. Pride and Prejudice was first adapted into a British television series in 1995 and later into a film, starring Keira Knightley and Matthew Macfayden that released in 2005. Sense and Sensibility was adapted into a film by Ang Lee in 1995, starring Kate Winslet, Emma Thompson, Alan Rickman, and Hugh Grant. It won the Oscar for the best adapted screenplay in 1996.
Emma, featuring Anya Taylor-Joy, is the most recent adaptation of Austen’s work.