Calendar Girls director Nigel Cole has signed on to direct HandMade Films' planned feature Eloise In Paris.

The Eloise In Paris feature is based on the book of the same name, adapted by Janet Brownell and Erin Joslyn. The live-action feature will shoot in 2007 on location in Paris, New York and London. A nationwide US casting search for the six-year-old heroine is underway. A spring 2008 release is planned.

The UK-based relaunched production company HandMade has the rights to the Eloise series of children's books written by Kay Thompson and illustrated by Hilary Knight.

Patrick Meehan and Thomas D. Adelman will produce; the pair previously produced two Eloise films for the Wonderful World of Disney starring Julie Andrews.

HandMade Films International is handling worldwide sales, and HandMade PLC is developing a line of merchandise to support the international cinema release.

'Even though she was created in the '50s, Eloise is in many ways the embodiment of a modern girl - independent, resourceful, spirited and inquisitive,' Cole said. 'It is these attributes, coupled with the magical quality of the Eloise adventures, which really drew me to the project.'

Adds HandMade Films Production's managing director Antony Rufus Isaacs: 'Nigel was our first choice for the project and we are delighted that he is on board. He has the ability to bring Eloise to the big screen in true style and with due reverence to Kay Thompson's classic character.'