One Day author David Nicholls says talks underway for a film adaptation of new novel Us

Jim Sturgess and Anne Hathaway star as Dexter and Emma in the film One Day. Courtesy Focus Features
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David Nicholls has confirmed that plans are being made for a big screen version of his new novel Us, admitting "I think it will be" adapted.

His comments come just weeks after saying a film remake was unlikely, instead telling The National that "if it does have a screen life it may well be on television."

Nicholls' previous bestseller One Day was made into the hit 2011 hit, starring Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess, which banked $60 million at the box office.

However unlike that movie, which was met with mixed reviews, Nicholls said he is not keen to write the screenplay himself this time around.

"There have been some conversations about [a film version of Us] and I think it will be decided soon," said Nicholls, responding to an audience question at Dubai's Festival of Literature on Friday March 6.

He shared a long list of doubts about the project, before declaring that “I think it will happen” despite his concerns.

“It’s written in the first person – I wrote a book as a book, I don’t think you should write a screenplay in disguise.

“It starts with Douglas mishearing something Connie says – you can’t do that on screen, on screen it’s objective, it’s third person. It is very, very, very hard to adapt anything written in the first person because we very rarely say what we feel.

“And because it covers 24 years – it would be very hard to age the characters.

“And it would be a very big and expensive to film – it goes to Paris and Venice, Madrid and Barcelona – any producer reading that will think it’s a nightmare. You’ve got to shoot at the Prado and the Louvre, getting permission for that would be misery for a producer.

“And it needs to be long – longer than two hours for a film. These are all reasons you couldn’t make it as a film.

“Having said all that, I think it will be [adapted] – but not by me.

“I’ve adapted all three of my novels and it’s been difficult. You can’t objectively make the rational decisions that are needed – at the moment I’m pretty sure that I won’t adapt it.”

He offered further evidence that the project was already well underway, saying that a team ("we") are looking to the UK sitcom Peep Show for inspiration on the script.

"There's things that might work well," he added. "There's three really great acting roles, but unless you use voiceover it's very hard to get Douglas to feel emotions. Voiceover is out of fashion, but there's ways to do it sparingly, like Peep Show, where you get what they really mean. I think we might use this... if it happens."