John Madden is in talks to direct Columbia Pictures' remake of the classic musical My Fair Lady.

According to Variety, Madden will continue the search for his leading lady and man in the new year. Though Kiera Knightley has been circling the project for some time, there is no formal agreement for her to play Eliza.

The remake will draw more closely on Alan Jay Lerner's book and the original play it is based on -- George Bernard Shaw's "Pygmalion" -- than on 1964's George Cukor-helmed Warner Bros. film starring Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison.

Kenworthy and Mackintosh intend to shoot the film, which will retain the tuner's score and 1912 setting, in the original London locations -- Covent Garden, Drury Lane, Tottenham Court Road, Wimpole Street -- plus Ascot racecourse.

Directors Danny Boyle, Baz Luhrmann and Stephen Daldry have been previously linked to the film project.

No production date was announced.