Kenneth Branagh May Direct Emma Watson in CINDERELLA

Re-imaging of the classic tale lines up new director and star.

Variety has learned that ‘Perks of Being a Wallflower’ and ‘Harry Potter’ star Emma Watson has entered into talks to take the title role in Disney’s live action adaptation of ‘Cinderella.’

Saoirse Ronan (‘Byzantium’), Imogen Poots (‘Need for Speed’), Alicia Vikander (‘Anna Karenina’) and Gabriella Wilde (‘The Three Musketeers’) were all in consideration for the role but the Mouse House was unable to secure deals due to scheduling conflicts.

Penned by ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna and Chris Weitz, the script has been described as a “re-imaging of the classic tale where the prince is set for a politically arranged marriage, until the evil plan is threatened when the prince meets Cinderella.” Cate Blanchett remains attached to play the evil stepmother.

Kenneth Branagh (‘Jack Ryan,’ ‘Thor’) is on board to direct. He replaces Mark Romanek (‘Never Let Me Go,’ ‘One Hour Photo’), who exited the project due to “creative differences,” namely his vision being “too dark and edgy” for the studio.

Disney is reportedly planning to have the film before cameras later this year in London for a 2014 release.