I can confidently say that Lasse Hallstrom has become one of my most well-respected directors over time. I loved Chocolat, What's Eating Gilbert Grape and last year's indie film The Hoax, and I have a lot of respect for The Cider House Rules and The Shipping News. So whenever there's news about a Hallstrom project, I sit up and pay attention.
Now Hallstrom is signed on to direct Channing Tatum in an adaptation of Nick Sparks' bestselling novel Dear John. According to Variety, the story follows "a soldier who, while home on leave, falls for a conservative college student." Tatum will play the soldier, though there's no word yet on who will play his leading lady.
I tend to think of Sparks' books as sentimental weepies and while I liked the movie version of The Notebook, frankly I barely got through A Walk to Remember. But who knows? Maybe Channing and whoever is cast as the "conservative college student" will become the next Ryan and Rachel!