Belfast Telegraph

Monday 27 April 2015

Quvenzhane Wallis cast as Annie

Quvenzhane Wallis is set to play Annie in a new film
Quvenzhane Wallis is set to play Annie in a new film

Quvenzhane Wallis has bagged the coveted role of orphan Annie in the new film adaptation of the musical.

The nine-year-old Beasts Of The Southern Wild actress - who lost out to Jennifer Lawrence for the best actress Oscar at the weekend - takes over the role from Willow Smith, who recently opted out of the movie, reports Us Weekly.

Hannah Minghella, president of production for Columbia Pictures, said in a statement: "Quvenzhane Wallis is a true star and we believe her portrayal as Annie will make her a true worldwide star."

Quvenzhane was previously rumoured to be among the frontrunners for the part after Willow - daughter of Will Smith - decided against it.

Will recently revealed Willow decided not to star in the remake because she wanted to be a normal teenager.

The Men In Black star admitted that even the thought of working with Jay-Z (who would be composing the music score) couldn't tempt the 12-year-old to take the leading role in Will Gluck's remake, which would be produced by Will and his wife Jada Pinkett-Smith.

"Willow was supposed to be doing Annie. We got Jay-Z to do the movie, got the studio to come in and Willow had such a difficult time on tour with Whip My Hair and she said, 'You know Daddy, I don't think so'," he told Hip Hop Wired.

"And I said, 'Baby, hold up!' I said, 'No, no, no, listen, you'll be in New York with all of your friends and Beyonce will be there. You will be singing and dancing,' and she looked at me and said, 'Daddy, I have a better idea, how about I just be 12'."

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