Reese Witherspoon to star in film of Cheryl Strayed’s book ‘Wild’

Reese Witherspoon will portray Cheryl Strayed in the movie version of "Wild."
(Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

The film version of Cheryl Strayed’s memoir “Wild” is picking up steam: Reese Witherspoon has signed on to portray the author.

In the book, Strayed writes of hiking the 1,000-mile Pacific Crest trail alone, compelled by grief over her mother’s death, a failed relationship and a need to seek out answers. Oprah Winfrey found it so compelling that she revived her shuttered book club for it. “Wild” was a 2012 bestseller.

The film has a strong literary pedigree -- in addition to the original book, the screenplay was written by Nick Hornby, author of “High Fidelity” and “About a Boy.” As a novelist, Hornby has had a number of bestsellers, and he received an Oscar nomination for his screenplay of “An Education.”


In the trailer for the book, Strayed explains that she was an absolutely inexperienced hiker when she set out. She says that by the end of the trip, she was transformed, but the transformation didn’t fit into a neat arc. Perhaps the movie will allow the story to remain as messy. The trailer for the book is below:

Fox Searchlight is making the movie version of “Wild,” which is being produced by Witherspoon’s production company, Pacific Standard. A director has not yet been lined up for the project; filming is tentatively scheduled to begin in the late fall.


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