February 21

Everything We Know About The Movie Adaptation, Where The Crawdads Sing

The Where the Crawdads Sing movie adaptation is finally happening, with the actress and producer, Reese Witherspoon, acquiring the rights to develop Delia Owens’ New York Times best-selling novel Where the Crawdads Sing into a movie. 

Witherspoon has had a reputable track record of scooping up smash-hit novels and bringing them onto the big screens. Some of her works include the movie versions of Big Little Lies, Wild, Gone Girl, and Little Fires Everywhere.

Witherspoon’s love for the murder mystery novel was evident when she made the book her September pick for her Hello Sunshine Book Club back in 2018. Now, it seems she’s taking it a step further with the adaptation on the way. 

That said, here’s everything we know about the movie adaptation, Where the Crawdads Sing

The Book

Since its release in August 2018, Delia Owens’ Where the Crawdads Sing has surprised many as it topped The New York Times best fiction sellers list for both 2019 and 2020, and as of late January 2021, the murder mystery novel has spent 124 weeks on the same list. 

The story follows two timelines around a young woman named Kya. The first describes Kya’s childhood as everyone in her life abandons her, while the second follows the murder investigation of Kya’s ex-boyfriend, a local celebrity in her town, for which she was deemed the prime suspect. 

Kya must now conduct her own investigation and piece together what really happened. 

The Movie

The movie will be both a coming of age tale and a crime thriller with the two timelines intertwining. 


While the full cast list hasn’t been released yet, we do know who will be starring as leads in the upcoming movie. 

Daisy Edgar Jones has been confirmed to play the lead character Kya. This won’t be Jones’ first time starring in a film adaptation as she also played Marianne in Normal People, a Hulu and BBC Three series adaptation of Sally Rooney’s novel. 

Two male leads have also been cast in late January. Harris Dickenson and Taylor John Smith have both signed up for the movie adaptation. 

Dickenson will play Chase Andrews, whose murder will prompt the start of Kya’s trial, while Smith will take the role of Tate Walker, a young fisherman who teaches Kya how to read and write before going off to college, and who eventually falls in love with Kya. 

Dickenson appeared in Maleficent: The Mistress of Evil, and Matthias & Maxime. He will also star in The King’s Man, which was pushed back by the pandemic but is due to be on screen this year. 

Smith, on the other hand, has been known for his role as John Keene in Sharp Objects, a psychological thriller series based on the 2006 Gillian Flynn’s debut novel of the same name. He is also known for his role in Shadow in the Clouds as Staff Sergeant Walter Quaid, with Chloe Grace Moretz. 


According to The Hollywood Reporter, Olivia Newman has been brought on to direct the movie adaptation. Newman both wrote and directed the Netflix feature film First Match, which won the LUNA Gamechanger Award for the best female director of a first feature and the Audience Award for the best narrative feature film in competition. 

Newman also previously directed episodes of Chicago PD, Chicago Fire, and FBI. 


Reese Witherspoon and Lauren Neustadter will be producing the movie for Sony’s lit-centered feature label, 3000 pictures, through their banner, Hello Sunshine. 


Lucy Alibar, Oscar-nominated scribe of Beasts of the Southern Wild, is writing the script with Newman overseeing the rewrite. 

Alibar was also the writer behind the film adaptation of The Secret Garden

Release Date

No release date has been announced yet as the film is still in the development stages. And with the uncertainties brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, filming of Where the Crawdads Sing movie adaptation will most likely be delayed. 


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