The Book Thief has become one of those staple YA books that people make you feel bad for not reading yet. (Okay, OKAY, I will read it!) The movie adaptation, which has been in the works for a couple years now, finally announced its cast! According to THR, Sophie Nelisse will play the title character, Liesel, and will be joined by Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson to star in The Book Thief.
This will be Nelisse’s English-language debut. The French-Canadian actress starred in the Oscar-nominated film, Monsieur Lazhar. Rush and Watson are set to play Hans and Rosa, Liesel’s foster parents. We know Rush from a great deal movies, most notably The King’s Speech and Pirates of the Caribbean. Watson also starred in a number of films, mostly recently Anna Karenina. These three definitely have talent, and it’ll be wonderful to see them tackle these revered characters.
In addition, Ben Schnetzer (Happy Town) and Nico Liersch have joined the cast. Schnetzer is set to play Max Vandenburg (aka ”the Jewish fist fighter”), and it is unclear who Liersch will play, although fans believe that he’ll likely portray Liesel’s best friend, Rudy Steiner.
Fox 2000 nabbed the rights for The Book Thief sometime in 2011 and in early 2012 hired Brian Percival (Downton Abbey) to direct. The script has been written by Michael Petroni (The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader). The movie is expected to begin production in Berlin this month.
About The Book Thief by Markus Zusak:
It’s just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery….
Narrated by Death, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a young foster girl living outside of Munich in Nazi Germany. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist – books. Soon she is stealing books from Nazi book-burnings, the mayor’s wife’s library, wherever they are to be found.
With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, Liesel learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids, as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement.
This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.