We’ve learned to pretty much discount any announcement of a new Spielberg film until opening night, seeing as the director has become notorious for allowing Variety to publish his every passing thought as his “next project.” So until we actually see photos of him on set, let’s just add this to the pile with the 18 other films he has listed as “in development” along with Indiana Jones 5, Lincoln, and the ominous Untitled Diablo Cody Project: Spielberg is said to have signed on to direct War Horse, edging out a biopic of George Gershwin and the awesomely named Robopocalypse as the film he will tackle after finally delivering on The Adventures Of Tintin.

Based on the novel by Michael Morpurgo, War Horse is a World War I epic that “charts the extraordinary friendship between a boy and a horse who are separated but whose fates continue to intertwine”—although we’re slightly fonder of the summary provided by Scholastic publishing and reprinted by Coming Soon, with its moving descriptions of equine longing:

In 1914, Joey, a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front. With his officer, he charges toward the enemy, witnessing the horror of the battles in France. But even in the desolation of the trenches, Joey´s courage touches the soldiers around him and he is able to find warmth and hope. But his heart aches for Albert, the farmer's son he left behind. Will he ever see his true master again?

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[Obligatory Spielberg joke] Not if the CGI aliens can help it! [/obligatory Spielberg joke]