Denis Villeneuve’s next project could finally be his Cleopatra movie, and rumours point to Zendaya starring as the Egyptian Queen.
It was announced six years ago that Denis Villeneuve would direct a Cleopatra movie for Sony Pictures. It’s been some time since we last heard about the project, but scooper Daniel Richtman believes that Villeneuve will finally start shooting the movie next year.
Not only that, but the report seems to indicate that Denis Villeneuve will be reuniting with his Dune stars as Zendaya is attached to star as Cleopatra. It adds that Timothée Chalamet has been offered the role of Octavius and Daniel Craig is being eyed for Caesar. Very interesting, but take it with a grain of salt for now until something more official has been announced.
The film is set to be written by David Scarpa (All The Money in the World) based on the best-selling biography by Stacy Schiff. Scarpa has previously said that the film will be treated more as a bloody political thriller than a lengthy historical epic. “With Cleopatra … instead of doing the movie as the prestige picture — the three-hour, lots of pageantry, people with fans and English accents and all that stuff — [we] really treat it as a political thriller,” Scarpa said. “Dirty, bloody, lots of people swearing and having sex and all of that other stuff and just treat it as a two-hour, lean, mean political thriller, full of assassinations, etc. Just going the opposite direction from the way we think that movie is going to go.“
Of course, Denis Villeneuve isn’t the only one developing a Cleopatra movie as Gal Gadot has also been attached to star in a different movie about the Egyptian Queen. The film was originally set to be directed by Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins, but she later dropped out of the project and was replaced by Kari Skogland (The Falcon and the Winter Soldier). Gadot has teased that her movie would change the narrative about Cleopatra. “This woman was so ahead of her time,” Gadot said. “Egypt and what Egypt was back then, was still futuristic to where we are today. I can’t say much. But to me, I’m so passionate to tell her story and to bring justice to this character, and her legacy and celebrate her and her legacy. We have a beautiful script, and I cannot wait to share this story with the world and change the narrative of Cleopatra simply being a seductor.“
Dune: Part Two will be released on March 14, 2024.