Margot Robbie, Elizabeth Banks to Adapt “Paper Bag Princess”

Margot Robbie and Elizabeth Banks are planning to create an adaptation of The Paper Bag Princess, a feminist fairy tale story written by Robert Munsch and illustrated by Michael Martchenko. It has sold about 10 million copies around the world.

Robbie’s company, LuckyChap Entertainment, and Banks’, Brownstone Productions, worked with Universal to acquire the rights in a bidding war.

The children’s book, published back in 1980, focuses on Princess Elizabeth. She is all set to marry a prince when a dragon attacks, kidnaps the guy and burns off all of the princess’ clothes; as a result, she quickly fashions a paper bag into something that she can wear and goes on a quest to recover her intended. (Spoiler alert: they don’t wind up together. The pompous prince was more concerned about Elizabeth’s poor fashion sense than he was in her rescuing him.)

The two actresses are planning to produce the film together. Banks, who made her directorial debut with Pitch Perfect 2, will also take the helm in this fun little romp, while Robbies is hoping to star in it, though this is somewhat subject to scheduling issues. (She is supposedly starring in three upcoming DCEU films, after all.) Katie Silberman is attached to write the screenplay; two of her works, Set It Up and Isn’t It Romantic?, are currently in post-production.

Many Hollywood films that attempt a feminist message wind up having mostly male talent behind the scenes, and the book was made by two men, so having The Paper Bag Princess produced, directed and written by women, as well as starring one, would be an interesting change of pace. Fans will have to wait and see if the stars align to make that happen.