EXCLUSIVE: Over the years, a number of film directors have taken their shot at “A Walk in the Woods,” Bill Bryson’s popular travel memoir circa 1998. Chris Columbus was looking to make it at some point; so was Barry Levinson.
Now the project looks to be getting new life with another veteran filmmaker: Richard Linklater.
The director is set to come aboard and could shoot the independently financed movie as early as this fall, according to Robert Redford, who will produce and star in the film.
A comic tale with travel overtones, "Walk" involves two boyhood friends who go their separate ways and come back later in life for an outdoor adventure. In Bryson’s tome, the writer and his pseudonymously named friend Stephen Katz try to walk the Appalachian Trail, in the process making sly observations about the world around them and their own lives. In many ways, then, it's a snug fit for the director of the "Before" trilogy, which involves much of the same.
A number of drafts of the screenplay have been overseen by Redford, with the Pulitzer-winning novelist Richard Russo taking a crack at it last year. Nick Nolte, Redford’s friend and sometime-collaborator, will star as Katz opposite Redford’s Bryson.