Country star Carrie Underwood will take on her first big-screen role in Soul Surfer, a drama based on the true story of surfing champion Bethany Hamilton, who lost an arm in a shark attack in 2003, when she was just 13. Race to Witch Mountain and Bridge to Terabithia‘s AnnaSophia Robb has been cast as Hamilton; Underwood will play church youth group leader Sarah Hill, while Dennis Quaid and Helen Hunt will play Hamilton’s parents. The cast also features Lorraine Nicholson and Kevin Sorbo. Principal photography starts this week in Oahu and Kauai, Hawaii. Sean McNamara will direct from a screenplay he wrote with Deborah Schwartz, Douglas Schwartz (Baywatch co-creator), and Michael Berk based on the best-selling autobiography Soul Surfer by Bethany Hamilton.

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