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Austen zombie adap lumbering into view

According to Variety , Natalie Portman has signed on to star in Lionsgate's new adaptation of Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith's reimagined period romance novel.

In case you've missed all the hype surrounding this bestseller, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is exactly what it sounds like: a new version of Austen's much-loved story of feisty, yet socially repressed heroine Elizabeth Bennet and her unforseen romancing by the aloof and arrogant Mr Darcy.

Except that in Grahame-Smith's update, Bennet also has zombies to contend with after the outbreak of a virus that turns the dead into flesh-eaters. Now if only we'd been allowed to study this version when we were at school...

Portman will be playing the suitor- and zombie-chashed heroine, as well as producing (now there's an empowered woman Austen would have been proud of).

There's no word yet on who'll play her Mr Darcy, though we do have an hankering to see Colin Firth cast as a zombie somewhere in this. Poetic justice and all that.

"Natalie and I are longtime passionate fans of Jane Austen's books," announces Portman's fellow producer Annette Savitch. "And this a fresh, fun and thought-provoking way to approach her work."

"The idea of zombies running rampant in 19th-century England may sound odd, but it lends a modern sense of urgency to a well-known love story."

If it doesn't, they're probably doing it wrong. Now we're wondering if anybody's going to snap up Grahame-Smith's follow-up, Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters . Sounds like a goer to us...

Thoughts, anyone? Does a zombie romcom mash-up of one of literature's greatest books sound good to you? Let us know!