Watson, Lerman in talks for ‘Perks’

Indie coming-of-age drama set up at Mr. Mudd

Emma Watson and Logan Lerman are in talks to star in indie coming-of-age drama “The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” set up at John Malkovich’s Mr. Mudd.

“Perks of Being a Wallflower” author Stephen Chbosky will direct from his own script with Lianne Halfon, Malkovich and Russell Smith producing.

For Watson, the casting would mark her first feature role outside her work as Hermione Granger in Warner Bros.’ eight “Harry Potter” films. Final pic, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II,” is set for release in July 2011.

She appeared in 2007 telepic “Ballet Shoes” and voiced Princess Pea in 2008’s “The Tale of Despereaux.”

Lerman, who starred in “Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief,” has been cast as D’Artagnan in Paul W.S. Anderson’s version of “Three Musketeers” for Constantin.

“Perks,” which was published in 1999, is narrated by a shy and unpopular teenager who describes his life by writing a series of letters to an anonymous person and explores the awkward times of adolescence, including drug use and sexuality.Book has been on the American Library Assn.’s list of the 10 most frequently challenged for reasons including the treatment of drugs, sex and suicide.Watson and Lerman are repped by WME.

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