Marc Forster tapped to helm Lionsgate’s White Bird: A Wonder Story
After producing the acclaimed 2017 adaptation of R.J. Palacio’s 2012 children’s novel, Lionsgate has announced it is developing an adaptation of the companion graphic novel White Bird: A Wonder Story and has tapped Golden Globe nominee Marc Forster (Christopher Robin) to direct the project.
Based on Palacio’s 2019 graphic novel, the story centers on Julian Albans, the 11-year-old bully who left Beecher Prep, who is still waiting for the insight of how kindness has the power to save lives when he is visited by his Grandmère from Paris and is transformed by her remarkable story of compassion and courage. Grandmère’s fairy-tale life before the war abruptly changes as the Nazis occupy France, and the outcast classmate who she once shunned becomes her savior and best friend.
The script for the adaptation is being penned by Mark Bomback (The Art of Racing in the Rain, War for the Planet of the Apes), with the film set to be produced by Mandeville Films’ David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman, who produced the original film, alongside Palacio, with Renée Wolfe attached to executive produce with Alex Young.
“Wonder connected with audiences who responded to its message of kindness and empathy, of looking past the surface to the person underneath,” Nathan Kahane, President of the Lionsgate Motion Picture Group, said in a statement. “Now more than ever, we need stories that champion compassion for others, and R.J. Palacio’s graphic novel White Bird builds on those themes. To direct the adaptation, Marc Forster brings not only mastery of his craft but a tender heart and gentle vision for a story of people finding connections between each other even in the most trying situations.”
Wonder, directed by author-turned-filmmaker Stephen Chbosky (The Perks of Being a Wallflower), starred Owen Wilson (Loki), Julia Roberts (Homecoming) and Jacob Tremblay (The Little Mermaid) and received rave reviews from critics and audiences alike and was a box office hit for the studio, grossing over $305 million at the global box office on a $20 million budget.
(Photo Credit: Jason Merritt/Getty Images)