Miramax awed by Austen

Hathaway stars in 'Jane' pic

Miramax Films has picked up North American rights to “Becoming Jane,” in which Anne Hathaway stars as Brit novelist Jane Austen.

Helmer is Julian Jarrold, who directed Miramax’s U.K. import “Kinky Boots.”

James McAvoy, Maggie Smith and Julie Walters also star.

Hollywood has had nothing less than an obsession with the Brit novelist’s work over the last decade, with faithful bigscreen adaptations of “Pride & Prejudice,” “Emma,” “Sense & Sensibility” and “Mansfield Park” and hip riffs “Bride & Prejudice,” “Bridget Jones’s Diary” and “Clueless.”

“Becoming” centers on a love affair Austen began as a 20-year-old — with brilliant, roguish Irishman Tom Lefroy — that inspired her career as one of the world’s great romantic scribes. Movie also looks at how the writer’s relationship with Lefroy helped create the male characters in “Pride & Prejudice.”

Kevin Hood and Sarah Williams penned the script; Ecosse Films is producing in association with Blueprint Pictures and Scion Films.

Graham Broadbent, Robert Bernstein and Douglas Rae produce, with Jeff Abberley and Julia Blackman exec producing.

U.K.-based Hanway Films was repping rights on the pic.

Miramax, headed by Daniel Battsek, is in current release with the Oscar-nominated South African pic “Tsotsi.”