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Greta Gerwig and Saoirse Ronan reunite for a new movie version of Little Women

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According to reports, Greta Gerwig has set the seventh Hollywood adaptation of Louisa May Alcott’s classic coming-of-age novel Little Women as her next directorial project. In case you’ve never read it, the novel—which was previously made into films in 1917, 1918, 1933, 1949, 1978, and 1994—follows the lives of the four March sisters, Amy, Jo, Beth, and Meg, through their adolescence and into adulthood alongside their beloved mother Marmee and boy-next-door Laurie in 19th century New England. In its announcement, Variety lists some names of actors currently in talks for the project, and while it doesn’t get into specifics, here’s our best guesses:

  • Saoirse Ronan as our protagonist, Josephine “Jo” March. Ronan starred in Gerwig’s last movie, so we’re assuming she will star in this one as well. The headstrong Jo, who dreams of becoming a writer, isn’t all that far off from the similarly headstrong Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson and her dreams of escaping to New York City, either. She also had a romantic subplot with Timothée Chalamet, the logical choice on the cast list for Jo’s would-be husband Laurie, in that earlier film. 
  • Emma Stone as eldest sister Meg. No offense to Stone, but she’s a few years older than Ronan and Pugh. And Meg’s motherly relationship with the sickly Beth jives with a detail in the Variety report saying that Sony is auditioning opposite actresses opposite Stone for that role.
  • Florence Pugh as Amy, the spoiled youngest March sister who loves to paint and draw. This is just process of elimination, really. (If you haven’t seen it, Pugh is great in a very different role in last year’s Lady Macbeth.)
  • Meryl Streep as Marmee. Obviously.
  • Timothée Chalamet as Laurie. Obviously. He’d also be perfect for the part, given that he naturally exudes a combination of “lovestruck puppy” and “brooding loner” vibes.
  • ?? as gentle, shy, sensitive third March sister Beth, who Variety implies in its report is still being cast.

Adaptations of Little Women are announced, and abandoned, all the time. (Remember the “gritty” post-apocalyptic TV reboot The CW announced a few years back?) But given the number of Oscar winners (and nominees!) involved, and the fact that Sony’s Amy Pascal is rushing the project into pre-production in an attempt to seal the deal with Gerwig, this one seems more likely to actually get made than most. Whether Gerwig’s Little Women will be shot from the script Sony hired Sarah Polley to write for them back in 2015 is still unclear.