Reese Witherspoon secretly wanted lead role in Where the Crawdads Sing

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Reese Witherspoon secretly wanted to play the lead role in Where the Crawdads Sing.

The actress/producer picked up the rights to the 2018 novel of the same name by Delia Owens via her Hello Sunshine production company several years ago.

Reflecting on the process of developing the project in an interview for CBS News, Reese jokingly revealed that she wanted to play the character of Kya - a young woman who raised herself in the dangerous marshlands of North Carolina - but knew she was "too old".

"I would have loved to have played Kya. But I'm a little too old," she laughed. "But that's part of what I loved about it. That's the kind of movie I want to make. (If) I want to be that character - I know what to do!"

The part of Kya went to Daisy Edgar-Jones, with the supporting cast of the drama-mystery featuring Taylor John Smith, Harris Dickinson, and Michael Hyatt.

And in an interview with Extra at the New York City premiere, Reese promised fans that the film honours the book.

"It was definitely a stand-alone novel. When I read it, I fell in love with the character Kya. She was just one-of-a-kind, she was a woman fighting against the elements to survive and everything was against her, but she saved herself... That's what I think that will really resonate with audiences, 'cause I don't know a woman who hasn't saved her own life," the star continued. "It's done beautifully, with gorgeous sets, beautiful actors, great performances. I think audiences are just going to love it."

Where the Crawdads Sing is now showing in cinemas.

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