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Alfre Woodard, Talitha Bateman to Star in Drama ‘So B. It’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Alfre Woodard and Talitha Bateman (“Hart of Dixie”) will star in the film adaptation of Sarah Weeks’ young adult novel “So B. It” with Stephen Gyllenhaal directing, Variety has learned.

“So B. It” chronicles the journey of a 12-year-old girl (Bateman) who decides to take a solo cross-country trip and leave the safety of her home life with her mentally challenged mother and agoraphobic neighbor, portrayed by Woodard. Production will begin in Los Angeles in July.

Producers are Outside The Box Productions’ Adam Tenenbaum and Orien Richman, who originally acquired the award-winning book and screenplay, and Branded Pictures Entertainment’s J. Todd Harris (“The Kids Are All Right”). Marc Marcum will co-produce and Michael Nelson is an executive producer.

Gyllenhaal, father of actors Jake and Maggie Gyllenhaal, is directing from a script by Garry Williams. His credits include “Paris Trout,” “Losing Isaiah” and “A Dangerous Woman.”

Woodard has previously been nominated for an Oscar (“Cross Creek”), three Golden Globes (winning for her performance in “Miss Evers’ Boys”) and 18 Emmys (including four wins for “Hill Street Blues,” “L.A. Law,” “The Practice” and “Miss Evers’ Boys”), along with many other accolades.

Woodard starred on NBC’s “State of Affairs.” Bateman, 13, is the lead in Sony’s upcoming feature “The Fifth Wave” opposite Chloe Grace Moretz, and in the upcoming “Nine Lives” opposite Kevin Spacey and Jennifer Garner.

The Weeks and Williams’ deals were made by the Dravis Agency’s Jason Dravis. Gyllenhaal is repped by Gersh and Untitled’s Jennifer Levine. ICM and Circle of Confusion represent Woodard. Bateman is repped by Coast to Coast Talent Group, Hg5 Entertainment’s Becky Poliakoff and Scott Faucett and attorney Ryan Nord.

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