'War Horse' Writer Richard Curtis to Direct Time-Travel Script 'About Time' for Working Title (Exclusive)

Richard Curtis War UK Horse Premiere - P 2012
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Richard Curtis War UK Horse Premiere - P 2012

New Zealand-born hitmaker to direct the low-budget project, with casting under way.

LONDON – Richard Curtis, the scribe whose Four Weddings and a Funeral, Notting Hill and Love, Actually have generated millions of box-office bucks, is gearing up to get back in the director’s chair this summer.

Curtis is to direct About Time, billed by backers as a low-budget time-travel picture from his own script.

The project is in preproduction with Working Title Films, the Universal-owned production banner led by Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner.

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Bevan told The Hollywood Reporter that casting is under way for the project and hopes it will go before the cameras “sometime this summer."

The movie will be an anticipated event for the British industry, uniting one of the most feted writers with Working Title after the two last worked together on Curtis’ big-screen directorial sophomore effort, 2009's The Boat That Rocked.

Curtis most recently penned the screenplay for Steven Spielberg’s War Horse with Lee Hall and also has written an episode of the BBC's Doctor Who.

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He is expected to direct the time-travel dramady ahead of other projects he is working on which include a fresh collaboration with fellow writer Ben Elton, with whom he created the cult comedy BlackAdder, and Trash, a script he is writing for the Oscar-nominated Stephen Daldry to direct.

Working Title is basking in Orange British Academy Film Award nomination glory for having picked up three noms for its first documentary, Senna, directed by Asif Kapadia, and 11 nominations for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, a film it made with backing from Studio Canal.

The news also comes as Joe Wright’s much-anticipated adaptation of Anna Karenina, starring Jude Law and Keira Knightley, is in postproduction and Contraband, directed by Baltasar Kormakur and starring Mark Wahlberg and Kate Beckinsale, topped the box office in North America last weekend.