Gal Gadot To Star As Cleopatra In Biopic From 'Wonder Woman' Director Patty Jenkins
Gal Gadot climbs up the royal ranks from Princess Diana of Themyscira to become Queen of the Nile.
The star "Wonder Woman" will team up with director Patty Jenkins to bring Cleopatra back to the screen in a female-dominated biographical drama about the Egyptian ruler, according to Deadline.
The two have won Alexander and Shutter Island's writer Laeta Kalogridis to script the project, with Paramount beating Universal, Warner Bros., Netflix and Apple for the rights to the film over the weekend.
The biopic is apparently the brainchild of the Israeli actor and their Pilot Wave production company. Gadot set up various studios and streaming services via Zoom alongside Jenkins to pin down the plot points informed by Kalogridis' research.
The project is reportedly on an "accelerated schedule" as it could be a major earner for the studio after the recent devastating blows to the film industry and theater operators caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
Patty Jenkins (left) and Gal Gadot will team up again to bring Cleopatra back to the big screen. (Photo: Richard Shotwell / Invision / AP)
Cleopatra was, of course, most famously starred by Elizabeth Taylor in Joseph L. Mankiewicz's 1963 film of the same name, whose budget of $ 42 million made it the most expensive film of its time. The film won numerous Oscar prizes for its lavish production design and cinematography, but almost bankrupted Twentieth Century Fox due to production delays, advertising scandals involving Taylor and co-star Richard Burton, and multiple changes to the cast and crew.
In the past few years Hollywood has put some effort into developing a Cleopatra movie, including a biopic in development at Sony Pictures, with Angelina Jolie and Lady Gaga said to star in various spots. The directors James Cameron, Paul Greengrass and most recently Denis Villeneuve have circled this project with a script by the scriptwriter David Scarpa.
"Instead of doing the movie as a prestige picture - the three hours, lots of pomp, people with fans and English accents and all that stuff - [we're] really treating it as a political thriller," Scarpa told The Hollywood Reporter in 2017. “Dirty, bloody, a lot of people swear and have sex and all that other stuff and just treat it as a two hour lean, mean political thriller, full of assassinations, etc. Just go in the opposite direction as we think the movie will go . "
Gadot and Jenkins are likely to steer their project in a different direction, but first they have to start their much-belated sequel to Wonder Woman.
As it stands now, “Wonder Woman 1984” will hit theaters this Christmas, after being pushed back several times due to the pandemic. The sequel was originally scheduled for June 5th before being postponed to August 14th and then October 2nd.
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This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.
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