David Fincher May Direct CLEOPATRA Starring Angelina Jolie

     March 22, 2011

Producer Scott Rudin’s Cleopatra biopic is continuing its search for a top-tier director.  Last October, James Cameron was in talks for the gig, but he decided to direct Avatar sequels instead.  Then Paul Greengrass started circling the project, but chose to helm Memphis, which is about the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  Now Deadline is reporting that Rudin wants to re-team with David Fincher on the project which is set to star Angelina Jolie as the Egyptian queen.

Hit the jump for more on the project and the likelihood that Fincher will sign on to direct.

Rudin says that this take on Cleopatra is different from previous films (especially the notorious 1963 Elizabeth Taylor flop) because it doesn’t have Cleopatra as a seductress.  Instead, the movie will take the story from her perspective and focus on her talents as a politician, strategist, and warrior.  Granted, when you cast Angelina Jolie, you’re not going to overlook Cleopatra’s sex appeal, but Jolie is also one of the few actresses that has enough box office clout to help get the project made.

Deadline reports that getting Fincher comes down to a matter of timing.  He’s currently working on The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (also produced by Rudin), and screenwriter Steve Zaillian is already working on adapting the second book in the trilogy, The Girl Who Played with Fire.  Fincher is expected to return to the director’s chair, but he’s also planning to direct 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea: Captain Nemo.  Fincher also told Steve that he’s waiting to get a script that’s a worthy adaptation of Arthur C. Clarke’s Rendezvous with Rama with Morgan Freeman attached to star.

Obviously, any project Fincher signs on to is a must-see, and it will be interesting to see if Fincher makes this project his next film or if Cleopatra will go to another big-name director.

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