For many, The Grapes of Wrath conjures memories of that 500-page novel they had to suffer through in high school English class. For others, it brings to mind a 1940 movie starring Henry Fonda. For Steven Spielberg, The Grapes of Wrath might just be his newest big project.
According to Deadline, Spielberg and DreamWorks are in talks with the Steinbeck estate to acquire the rights to the author’s classic Pulitzer Prize-winning book for a big screen project. The original 1940 adaptation of The Grapes of Wrath garnered seven Oscar nominations and two wins, including Best Director for John Ford. Spielberg has been a longtime admirer of Ford, but he reportedly will only produce this movie and will not take the helm as director.
In case you aren’t familiar with the book or original movie, The Grapes of Wrath tells the story of the Joads, a poor family of tenant farmers who leave their home in Oklahoma to escape economic hardship after a drought ravages their land. Fleeing the Dust Bowl, they wind up in California, where they continue to struggle for survival during the Great Depression.
It’s too early to know any other details about the new Grapes of Wrath movie, but for now we can say that wherever there’s a Spielberg-produced film adaptation of a classic novel, we’ll be there.
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