Working Title developing live 'Mermaid'

English-language live-action adaptation with Joe Wright

LONDON -- Working Title Films is teaming with director Joe Wright to develop a live-action movie version of Hans Christian Andersen's fairytale "The Little Mermaid."

The script -- for what will be the first English-language live-action adaptation of the tale -- has been penned by Abi Morgan ("Brick Lane") for Working Title and Wright.

It tells the classic tale of a young mermaid who gives up her life in the sea to love a human prince.

Andersen's story was first published in 1837 and has been adapted numerous times for stage and screen. Wright's version is inspired by a children's puppet theatre production of the classic at London's Little Angel Theatre Company, backers said.

Working Title's co-chairmen Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner announced the plans.

The project brings Wright back into the Working Title stable having made his first three movies with them, "Pride & Prejudice," "Atonement" and "The Soloist."

Wright is currently in post-production on the Saoirse Ronan, Cate Blanchett and Eric Bana starrer "Hanna" for Focus Features.