The Wrap is reporting that Greenberg director Noah Baumbach has signed on to replace Ron Howard as the director of The Emperor’s Children, an adaptation of Claire Messud’s 2006 novel. Howard has opted instead to produce the film with his frequent collaborator, Brian Grazer.

The film, which is currently on the hunt for outside financing, is reportedly set to star the intense stare-er Eric Bana, Richard (“I was funny when I guested on “The Simpsons,” remember?”) Gere, and Keira Knightley. Baumbach will also be writing the film’s adapted screenplay, which centers on three Brown University grads who “struggle to realize the lofty expectations held for their personal and professional lives” in a pre-and post-9/11 America.

Howard, was originally slated to direct but moved to the producer’s chair in order to helm his own project, a Universal comedy about infidelity starring Vince Vaughn and Kevin James, which yes, sounds really, really terrible. I’m not sure why he would choose that project over this one but from my perspective it looks like Baumbach’s going to be the director who comes out on top with this one. Which film are you looking forward to seeing?

What do you think? Will Baumbach be a better director for this tragic material?