Keira Knightley is in advanced negotiations to star in Working Title Films' Jane Austen adaptation Pride And Prejudice.

The UK star is to start shooting mid-August, according to UK press reports, although Working Title is still to cast the role of Darcy.

The production means Knightley will be moving from a book by Deborah Moggach to a script by the same writer. Moggach wrote the original Pride And Prejudice screenplay - with Lee Hall coming on board later - while Knightley was to star this year opposite Jude Law in Tulip Fever, adapted from Moggach's novel.

That production had to be postponed following the government clamp down on tax funds on Feb 10. Tulip Fever producer Alison Owen had aimed to re-start the production this autumn, although it is unclear whether that will clash with Knightley's work on Pride And Prejudice.

Director Joe Wright, whose credits include BBC TV min-series Charles II and Nature Boy, makes his feature debut on Pride And Prejudice. Paul Webster is producing for Working Title.