James Cameron in Talks to Direct CLEOPATRA with Angelina Jolie

     October 14, 2010

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Take this with extreme skepticism, but how would you like to see a James Cameron-directed film about Cleopatra starring Angelina Jolie? Yeah, me too. That is exactly what Sony Pictures Entertainment is exploring with the director, and the film would be based off the Stacy Schiff book Cleopatra: A Life. What a life it was and what a film this could possibly be. Hit the jump for more details about the potential film and why this likely will not occur.

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Deadline reports that Sony and Cameron are serious about this happening, but nothing has been signed, and that’s the biggest hurdle here. Jolie is attached to the film, but that’s it at the moment. Meanwhile, Brian Helgeland (L.A. Confidential, Mystic River) will provide the script with Scott Rudin producing (he acquired the book). Part of the potential problem is the relationship that Cameron has with Fox. The company has financed two of the biggest box-office gambles in the history of cinema, Titanic and Avatar.  Both returned a combined $3 billion in box office receipts, and the latter ushered in the era of 3D that has most of us shaking our heads.

However, the draw of this film, with the producing, acting, and writing talent behind it, is damn enticing. Cameron is a busy man right now, with a planned sequel to Avatar, while producing a 3D reboot of Fantastic Voyage at Fox and Guillermo del Toro’s passion project At The Mountains Of Madness at Universal. Despite that schedule, Cameron has the power her to do just about what he damn well pleases. Did I mention Avatar made over $2 billion dollars at the box office?

The Egyptian pharaoh has an interesting tie to 20th Century Fox as well, as the article mentions the 1963 Cleopatra starring Elizabeth Taylor. Fox financed that film and the budget ran wild, starting at only $2 million and reportedly reaching $44 million by the end and nearly bankrupting the company. The receipts ended up coming in at $26 million, which was the highest grosser for that year but clearly under the budget. Interesting that Cameron is the man that keeps challenging their wallets but returning big bucks at the box office. Perhaps… PERHAPS, he can do the same at Sony if he signs on the dotted line. I vote that they should use papyrus if he does. Believe me when I say that if there are any updates on this, we will let you know.

So hit the comments and let us know what you think.

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