the industry

Jaden Smith to Strike a Crane Pose

He goes way back.

Jaden-san: Will’s son Jaden Smith will star in a refashioned version of Karate Kid. The 10-year old Smith will reprise Ralph Macchio’s role in a film that will “borrow elements” from the original (awkward kid meets weird old guy who teaches him how to deal with his tormentors, etc.) but is not a strict remake. The script is being written by Chris Murphy and will be shot next year in Beijing and other exotic locales. The part of Pat Morita’s inimitable Mr. Miyagi has yet to be cast, but given Jaden’s apparent inability to appear onscreen without pops by his side, don’t be surprised when Big Willie’s Dojo takes on Cobra Kai in this updated version. [Variety]

Harvey’s Oscar Bid: Harvey Weinstein has reached a deal to take Pulitzer Prize– and Tony-winning play August: Osage County from the stage to the big screen. Weinstein will produce with Jean Doumanian and Steve Traxler, lead producers of the Broadway production, and the script will be written by playwright Tracy Letts. An investor in the stage play, Weinstein expects the movie to hit in 2011, assuming the Weinstein Company is still around in 2011. [Variety]

Whoopi, Ph.D.: Whoopi Goldberg will take some time out from her morning coffee talks to develop a series, along with partner Tom Leonardis, for Discovery Emerging Networks as a part of a new development deal. Goldberg’s show will address “curiosities about the world,” presumably including the reasons anyone watches The View. [Variety]

America Supports the Troops: America Ferrera is set to star as a soldier’s wife in post-Iraq-war drama American Tragic, which she will also executive-produce. The film follows a young soldier (Ryan O’Nan) who cannot adjust to civilian life after returning from the war. So he leaves his wife (Ferrera) to travel the country seeking redemption. Ferrera’s calculation: If no one bothered to see any of the Iraq-war movies, maybe they’ll be interested in a post-Iraq-war movie! [HR]

Mmm, Romantic: Richard Jenkins has joined the cast of Dear John, a Lasse Hallstrom–directed version of a Nicholas Sparks novel. Jenkins will play the father of a soldier (Channing Tatum) who meets his true love (Amanda Seyfried) while on military leave. Expect a lot of kisses and even more tears. [HR]

Long Distance Love American Teen director Nanette Burstein is in negotiations with New Line Cinema to take her first crack at fiction with Going the Distance. The story centers on a couple’s struggles to maintain a long-distance relationship, with one living in Chicago and the other in L.A. According to screenwriter Geoff LaTulippe, the couple knows the relationship is a bad idea, but they love each other too much to break it off. Expect a lot of tears and even more adultery. [Hollywood Insider/EW]

Jaden Smith to Strike a Crane Pose