HEAT VISION

Emma Thompson, Newcomer Alisha Weir to Star in 'Matilda' Adaptation for Netflix, TriStar

Emma Thompson and Alisha Weir
<p>Emma Thompson and Alisha Weir </p>   |   Roy Rochlin/Getty Images; Courtesy of Netflix
Thompson joins the cast as Miss Trunchbull, whereas the 11-year old actress has been cast as the title character.

Netflix and director Matthew Warchus have found their Matilda.

Relative newcomer 11-year old Alisha Weir has been cast as the title character in the streamer’s adaptation of the musical that is based on the Roald Dahl book, Netflix announced Thursday.

Emma Thompson also joins the cast as Miss Trunchbull, the cruel headmistress and antagonist of the piece.

The two join Lashana Lynch, who The Hollywood Reporter broke as being cast as Miss Honey, the kindly teacher that encourages Matilda and her telekinetic gifts.

Dahl’s book centered on a precocious and gifted girl who uses her powers to overcome bullies, including her family and her school's principal and protect her friends. It was adapted into a movie in 1996 in which Mara Wilson played the character with Pam Ferris as the foaming at the mouth Trunchbull. The movie, while not a hit when made, is now considered a 1990s children’s classic.

"Matilda will be an imaginative and fresh retelling of the award-winning musical, Matilda, featuring talented young newcomers, alongside established stars," said Warchus, who also directed the hit Tony and Olivier Award-winning Broadway musical. "I look forward to introducing this beloved and powerful story to a new generation of fans around the world."

The film is being produced by Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner of Working Title, Jon Finn, and Luke Kelly of The Roald Dahl Story Company. Netflix will distribute worldwide except in the UK where TriStar Pictures will distribute theatrically.

Dennis Kelly adapted the musical which featured original music and lyrics by Tim Minchin.

Matilda is a major break for Wier, whose scant credits include an indie horror movie titled Don’t Leave Home and a drama titled Darklands.

Thompson will next be seen in Disney’s Cruella, a new take on the 101 Dalmatians villainess.

LATEST NEWS