America Ferrera cast opposite Matthew McConaughey in The Lost Bus

America Ferrera cast opposite Matthew McConaughey in The Lost Bus

America Ferrera has landed a role opposite Matthew McConaughey in 'The Lost Bus'.

The 39-year-old actress has signed up to appear in the drama film from the Oscar-nominated director Paul Greengrass.

The picture - which is being developed, distributed and produced by Apple Original Films - is based on Lizzie Johnson's book 'Paradise: One Town's Struggle to Survive an American Wildfire', about the horrific 2018 California wildfires that claimed over 100 lives and destroyed much of the town of Paradise.

The movie heads into production this spring and focuses on Kevin McKay (McConaughey) and Mary Ludwig (Ferrera), a bus driver and teacher who lead a bus full of young schoolchildren through the Camp Fire.

America starred in the blockbuster 'Barbie' as Mattel employee Gloria – a role that has earned her an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress – and won praise for her powerful speech about the difficulties of being a woman in the picture, a scene where director Greta Gerwig gave her free reign.

She told The New York Times newspaper: "Greta asked me, 'Why don’t you just tell me what you would say? Write it in your own words. What would you add?'

"Not every director starts out by inviting actors to rewrite their work. Some of what we talked about made it into the script.

"The line, 'Always be grateful' came out of that conversation with Greta. She expounded on it adding, 'But never forget that the system is rigged.'

"There were many versions that we did. We ended in tears. It ended in laughter, it got big, it got small, and I was able to do that because I really trusted Greta to know what would be right for the film."