Cannes: Lionsgate Books Armando Iannucci's 'David Copperfield' for U.K.

Armando Iannucci - The Death of Stalin - Tiff Premiere -Getty -H 2017
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"With such an amazing and immense cast, 'David Copperfield' is the 'Infinity War' of the 1840s," says Iannucci.

Armando Iannucci’s upcoming Dev Patel-starring The Personal History of David Copperfield has found a British home.

Lionsgate has acquired U.K. rights to the film, also to star Tilda Swinton, Hugh Laurie, Peter Capaldi and Ben Whishaw, and set to be a fresh take on Charles Dickens’ semi-autobiographical masterpiece. Iannucci – who wrote the feature alongside his fellow Oscar-nominated In The Loop writer Simon Blackwell – produces with Kevin Loader.

The Personal History of David Copperfield, which is expected to begin shooting in the U.K. in June, will chronicle the life of its iconic title character (Patel) as he navigates a chaotic world to find his elusive place within it. From his unhappy childhood to the discovery of his gift as a storyteller and writer, Copperfield’s journey is by turns hilarious and tragic, but always full of life, color and humanity.

“I’m thrilled to be teaming up with Lionsgate in the U.K. to be making this wonderful story about poverty and riches, and friendship and loss,” said Iannucci. “With such an amazing and immense cast, David Copperfield is the Infinity War of the 1840s. I’m so glad to be reuniting with many of the talented crew behind The Death of Stalin to make it.”

FilmNation is handling international sales and co-repping with UTA for the U.S.

A version of this story appears in The Hollywood Reporter's May 11 daily issue from the Cannes Film Festival.