Shauna Cross Talks About IF I STAY – The Project She’s Writing For Director Catherine Hardwicke

     September 29, 2009

Shauna Cross If I stay slice with catherine hardwicke.jpg

Earlier today, I was at the Los Angeles press day for “Whip It” and I was able to participate in a roundtable interview with Shauna Cross.  She wrote the film’s screenplay based on her book “Derby Girl”, which recounts her real-life skating exploits with the Los Angeles Derby Dolls.  She’s currently attached to write “If I Stay” for director Catherine Hardwicke, and I was able to find out what the project is about and where it is in Catherine’s very busy schedule. Cross says, “it’s about a young woman who gets in a terrible car accident with her family and it follows the 24 hours of her outside of her body in a coma.” She also told us, “we’re just about to go to cast.” Much more on the project after the jump:

Shauna Cross.jpgAccording to Cross, she’s not exactly sure where the project falls into Hardwicke’s schedule as the director is developing both “Hamlet” and the “Red Riding Hood” project at Warner Bros. But with Cross telling us they’re going to go out for casting soon, that probably means whichever film gets the financing together first, that’s the one Hardwicke will do.

If you’ve ever wondered why a director attaches themselves multiple projects, this is the reason. You can have a great script with a great cast, but if the money isn’t there, it’s not getting made. So what directors do is develop many films at once and whichever one gets the money gets made.

Here’s what Shauna told us about the project:

According to IMDB, you’re attached to a project called “If I Stay”.

Shauna Cross: That’s a book adaptation. The name is “If I Stay”. Catherine Hardwicke is directing it. We’re just about to go to cast and it’s a pretty special project. It’s kind of…it’s got an edge to it and it’s funny and heartbreaking and it’s a little “Lovely Bones” esque. There is definitely a lot of humor in there but it’s definitely more dramatic than I’ve done before. It’s been an amazing experience and it’s an incredible story.

Is there a logline to it?

catherine hardwicke (1).jpgShauna: You know it sounds kind of odd but it’s about a young woman who gets in a terrible car accident with her family and it follows the 24 hours of her outside of her body in a coma. She sort of looks over her life and sees the fallout of what happens to everyone in the car accident and she basically has the choice of whether to live or die…given the tragedy. And it sounds so intense and crazy, but the thing is the real story was all the in between are the most amazing and incredible. Her parents are these punk rock bad asses who she is in the car with…and it’s kind of a really fun, offbeat family in the middle of this tragedy.

Catherine is supposedly doing Hamlet with Emile Hirsch. Is your project going before that or is Hamlet going?

Shauna: She is attached to a lot of things. It sort of depends on which lands first. I don’t know where Hamlet is at right now.

If you’re going to out to cast that means…

Shauna: You don’t really know how…and it’s also how the financing…so we’re hustling and we’ll see. There is also the Red Riding Hood project at Warner Bros.  I know Hamlet means a lot to her.

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