Anne Hathaway will play the Grand High Witch in director Robert Zemeckis’ The Witches adaptation at Warner Bros. Pictures, according to Variety. The trade says that she has also closed a deal to star in the Sesame Street movie.
The Witches, based on the 1983 novel by Roald Dahl, was previously turned into a 1990 movie with Anjelica Huston playing the Grand High Witch. That Jim Henson Productions movie was also released by Warner Bros.
Zemeckis will also write the script as well as produce with his partner Jack Rapke. They are producing through their ImageMovers, along with Alfonso Cuaron and Guillermo del Toro.
The Witches tells the story of a brave young boy and his Norwegian grandmother as they battle against England’s child-hating witches. When he was a child himself, Roald Dahl used to spend every summer holiday with his family in Norway, where he was inspired by bedtime stories of witches and magic. It is said that the grandmother in The Witches was partially inspired by Roald’s own mother.
In 1983, the year it was published, The Witches won three awards: The New York Times Outstanding Books Award, The Federation of Children’s Book Groups Award, and The Whitbread Award.