Liz Friedlander, a veteran music video director who made her feature debut last year with Take The Lead, will direct a film of Tom Wolfe's best-selling novel I Am Charlotte Simmons, marking the first time Wolfe has allowed one of his novels to be optioned since The Bonfire Of The Vanities in 1987.

Jere Hausfater's Esssential Entertainment is executive producing the project, arranging the financing and handling worldwide distribution.

Producers are John Watson and Pen Densham will produce for Trilogy Entertainment with Neil Kaplan producing for Essential, while Christopher Law will serve as executive producer alongside Hausfater.

Syntax Entertainment is also acting as a production entity on the film.

I Am Charlotte Simmons is the story of a smart girl who faces her first disillusionment and betrayal when she lands in an unforgiving Ivy League college.

'The opportunity to bring a Tom Wolfe novel to the screen is a rare and special gift,' said Watson in a statement. 'With Essential and Liz Friedlander, we have found the perfect combination of enthusiastic partners ready to serve this sensational novel in the most creative and visionary sense.'

Friedlander is represented by Lee Keele at The Gersh Agency. Trilogy is represented by attorney Bob Wyman. Bob Bookman at CAA represents the book rights for the project.

Watson and Densham's producing credits include Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves, Backdraft, Tank Girl, Moll Flanders, The Dangerous Lives Of Altar Boys, Larger Than Life and Just Buried. Densham and Watson also co-wrote Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves and Watson recently adapted Richard Condon's novel An Infinity Of Mirrors.