According to The Hollywood Reporter, Keira Knightley originally began negotiations for the part before the turn of the year, and the outlet notes that those talks have been steadily progressing ever since. If a deal were to fall into place, the actress would take on the multi-faceted role of Sophia Augusta Fredericka, a would-be Russian leader who “takes control of her life, her marriage, and her kingdom becoming Russia’s most celebrated and beloved monarch: Catherine the Great.”
Rooted in the 18th century, Streisand’s period drama is based on an award-winning script from Kristina Lauren Anderson. Rising to power in 1762, Sophia Augusta famously organized a coup against her unruly husband, Tsar Peter III, eventually going on to become of the longest-ruling female leaders in the country’s history.
But Streisand’s biopic will reportedly roll back the years to when Catherine the Great was known only as Sophia, a young woman trapped in a loveless marriage with the aforementioned and inept monarch. Gil Netter (The Blind Side, Life of Pi, Dude, Where’s my Car?) will produce the period drama.
From one starry ensemble to the next, Keira Knightley will follow her role in Everest by starring opposite Will Smith – not to mention Kate Winslet, Helen Mirren, Edward Norton, Naomie Harris et al. – for Collateral Beauty. It’s due to hit theaters on December 16.
Catherine the Great is expected to fire up production sometime in late 2016.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter