Newell Replaces Mendes On “Beach”

Director Mike Newell (“Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire,” “Prince of Persia”) is set to replace Sam Mendes (“American Beauty,” “Revolutionary Road”) at the helm of the film adaptation of “Atonement” author Ian McEwan’s 2007 novel “On Chesil Beach” for Studio Canal reports Screen Daily.

Mendes was working on the film a few years ago and filming was a month away from kicking off last year when Focus Features withdrew their funding on the film and production was put on ice.

With Mendes now committed to the next James Bond feature “Skyfall” for much of the next year, he’s now staying onboard in a producing capacity while Newell takes the reins one he wraps up filming his new adaptation of Dickens’ “Great Expectations”.

Set in the UK in the 60’s, the story revolves around two repressed virgins in their early 20’s whose futile attempt at lovemaking leads to doubt and recriminations. McEwan himself adapted the script. Carey Mulligan was previously linked to the female lead role, that’s likely no longer the case.