THR is stating that Kenyan film director Wanuri Kahiu is set to direct Stranger Things’ Millie Bobby Brown in the adaptation of acclaimed YA novel The Thing About Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin.
Jellyfish tells the story of a young girl named Suzy (Brown) as she enters seventh grade. When her former best friend dies in a drowning accident — and not believing her mother who says that sometimes “these things happen” — Suzy becomes convinced that the true cause of the tragedy was a rare jellyfish sting. She retreats into a silent world of her imagination and begins crafting a globe-trotting plan to prove her theory, with the book exploring the ideas of life and death, the frailty of friendships and the potential of hope right next door.
Universal has optioned the rights to the 2015 book published by Little Brown and is developing the adaptation with producers Gigi Pritzker and Rachel Shane of MWM Studios, Bruna Papandrea, and Reese Witherspoon.
Adrian Alperovich and Melissa Rucker will executive produce on behalf of MWM Studios. Jeanne Snow will also exec produce. Senior exec vp production Erik Baiers and director of development Lexi Barta are overseeing on behalf of Universal.
Brown is one of the stars of Stranger Things, whose season three arrives July, and stars in Godzilla: King of the Monsters, which hits the big-screen May 31.
Kahiu wrote and directed the LGBTQ film Rafiki, which made history last year as being the first Kenyan film to screen at the Cannes Film Festival even as the movie was banned in her home country due to its themes.