Maguire Gears Up Z For Zachariah

Post apocalyptic novel adaptation ahoy!

After slowing down his acting career slightly to focus on producing and family, Tobey Maguire appears to be gearing things back up again with a vengeance. He’s got The Great Gatsby under his belt and will be part of Jason Reitman’s Labor Day. Now he’s also signed on to star in and produce an adaptation of Robert C O’Brien’s post-apocalyptic novel Z For Zachariah.

Craig Zobel, who last directed the controversial pic Compliance (which caused angry responses at this year’s Sundance Film Festival), is directing based on a Black List script by Nissar Modi.

O’Brien’s book paints the bleak picture of a world in the grip of a nuclear nightmare. War has left most of the planet uninhabitable, with pockets of clean air carefully guarded. In one such valley, a teenage girl maintains a farm alone, and is disturbed when a stranger arrives. He reveals himself to be a scientist (Maguire), who has been weakened by a contaminated stream. Though our heroine helps to nurse him back to health, she also discovers his dark past and dangerous ambitions.

The novel has been used in schools on both sides of the Atlantic and was also adapted by the BBC back in 1984 as a Play For Today. What do you think about its chances as a film?