Brazilian helmer replaces Catherine Hardwicke

Dakota Fanning is in talks to star in Summit’s supernatural “If I Stay,” with Denise Di Novi producing.

Originally set to be directed by Catherine Hardwicke, pic will now be helmed by Brazilian filmmaker Heitor Dhalia.

Story revolves around a musician, who’d be played by Fanning, and her boyfriend, a rising star in the indie rock world. Already faced with a choice between her art and her relationship, she is forced to make a harder choice between life and death after being involved in a fatal car accident.

Shauna Cross has written the adaptation based on Gayle Forman’s young adult novel.

“If I Stay” has been a high priority project at Summit for more than a year, with the company nailing down rights before the book was published in April 2009.

Hardwicke was onboard to helm after she directed the first “Twilight” film but dropped out to direct “Red Riding Hood” for Warner Bros.

Fanning has been a favorite at Summit of late, appearing as Jane in the “Twilight” trilogy and in Summit’s “Push” with Chris Evans.

She was recently seen in “The Runaways” and can be seen next in part one of “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn.”

Dhalia most recently helmed “Adrift” with Camilla Belle and Vincent Cassel.

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