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Very soon, cameras will begin rolling on Steven Spielberg’s big-screen adaptation of Ronald Dahl’s 1982 book, THE BFG (Big Friendly Giant), and today comes news that the filmmaker has found his lead. 10-year-old newcomer Ruby Barnhill has been cast as Sophie, the young London girl who embarks on a great adventure in Giant Country.

“After a lengthy search, I feel Roald Dahl himself would have found Ruby every bit as marvelous as we do. We have discovered a wonderful Sophie in Ruby Barnhill.”Steven Spielberg

DreamWorks acquired the rights to the book in 2010 after Kathleen Kennedy brought it to the company.  Melissa Mathison, who last teamed with Spielberg and Kennedy on “E.T.,” has written the screenplay.  Spielberg, Frank Marshall and Sam Mercer will produce while Kennedy, John Madden and Michael Siegel are on board as Executive Producers.  Kristie Macosko Krieger and Adam Somner are Co-Producers.

Spielberg will begin production on “The BFG” in early 2015 and it will open in U.S. theaters on July 1, 2016.  The Walt Disney Company is distributing the film in the U.S. and select international territories while Mister Smith Entertainment is handling distribution in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.  DreamWorks’ partner, Reliance, will distribute the film in India.

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