Jonathan Levine to Direct ‘Little Girl Lost’

Jonathan Levine has signed on to direct Richard Aleas‘ hardboiled crime novel Little Girl Lost for Universal Pictures. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World screenwriter Michael Bacall will pen the screenplay adaptation You might remember that Levine is the director of one of our favorite films of the 2008 Sundance Film Festival — The Wackness.

The Wrap broke the news. Here is the description from the book publisher:

A Shamus Award-nominee Author. John Blake and Miranda Sugarman dated in high school, but after graduation they went their separate ways: he stayed in New York City and became a private investigator while she moved to the midwest and settled down to a safe, respectable life as an eye doctor. Or so he thought — until the day, ten years later, when he opened the Daily News and saw Miranda’s photo staring out at him under the headline “STRIPPER MURDERED.” John wants to find out how Miranda ended up stripping for a living. What happened to Miranda’s college roommate, Jocelyn, who also dropped out when Miranda did? And just how was Miranda involved with small-time drug dealer Murco Khachadurian? The closer John gets to the answers, the more dangerous and violent the case becomes, until a bloody assault on someone close to him leads John to a shocking discovery and a shattering face-off with the person responsible. Richard Aleas is the pseudonym of a Shamus Award-nominated mystery writer who lives in New York City.

Levine has produced a couple quality films but has not had the best luck on the distribution end of things. His debut horror film All The Boys Love Mandy Lane screened to acclaim at the 2006 Toronto International Film Festival, but a series of unfortunate events has prevented the film from being released in the US. The Wackness was one of the high buzz films at Sundance 2008, but Sony Pictures Classics dumped the film theatrically with a horrible/almost non-existant marketing plan.

Levine has completed production on the film Live With It (formerly called I’m With Cancer) starring Seth Rogen, Anna Kendrick, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bryce Dallas Howard, although it isn’t expected to make a festival premiere until late-2011. Earlier this year it was reported that he’ll adapt the forthcoming novel Warm Bodies, a “darkly comic, existential zombie romance set at the end of the world” by Isaac Marion.

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