February 1, 2008 / 6:13 AM / 10 years ago

Emily Blunt heeds call of immigrant song

NEW YORK (Hollywood Reporter) - Emily Blunt is in talks to star in “The Girl,” a feature about immigration and maternal bonding, from the production banner behind “Maria Full of Grace” and “Half Nelson.”

Actress and honoree Emily Blunt poses at the Women in Film 2007 Crystal and Lucy Awards in Beverly Hills, California June 14, 2007. Blunt is in talks to star in "The Girl," a feature about immigration and maternal bonding, from the production banner behind "Maria Full of Grace" and "Half Nelson." REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

The movie focuses on a Texas woman (Blunt) who through a chance encounter finds the young daughter of an illegal immigrant who has become separated from her mother. Saddled with a child she doesn’t wish to care for, the woman then searches for the child’s mother, a quest that takes her south of the border.

David Riker has written the screenplay for “Girl” and is attached to direct. Riker co-wrote the Sundance film “The Sleep Dealer,” which took home the dramatic screenwriting award; he also penned the episodic immigrant story “La Ciudad.”

Although the script for “Girl” is said to be essentially finished, the project likely won’t shoot until after the writers’ strike, probably in the fall, sources said.

Paul Mezey’s Journeyman Pictures will produce, and HBO Films is circling the project, with the possibility of the shingle financing and producing as it did with “Maria.” HBO Films could air the movie on the network as well as seek theatrical distribution, as the shingle has done with several of its projects.

HBO Films has collaborated with Journeyman on several occasions, most recently on “Sugar,” the feature about a Dominican baseball player in the U.S. that premiered at Sundance this year. “Maria” was a crossover hit of sorts, earning an Oscar nomination for lead actress Catalina Sandino Moreno.

Blunt, who recently appeared in “Charlie Wilson’s War” and “Dan in Real Life,” is in production on the period royals pic “The Young Victoria.”

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

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