Anne Hathaway will star in an adaptation of William Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew”, an individual with knowledge of the deal told TheWrap.
Abi Morgan, who scripted “The Iron Lady” and “Shame,” will handle the adaptation, a modern-day retelling of the iconic play set in mid-20th century Italy.
The project will be produced by Debra Hayward and Working Title, another individual with knowledge of the film told TheWrap.
Hayward, a former Working Title executive, left the company in June of 2011 to start her own production company, Monumental Pictures. She promptly signed a first-look deal with Working TItle, and “Shrew” will be the first film made under that agreement.
Universal and Working Title, Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner’s British production outfit responsible for “Fargo” and “Billy Elliot,” have a longstanding production relationship dating to 1999. Their current first-look deal runs through 2015, meaning Universal would get first crack at distributing the film.
The two companies have collaborated on such films as “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” “Atonement” and 2012’s “Les Miserables.” Hathaway won a Golden Globe on Sunday for her performance as Fantine in that film, and she is considered the frontrunner for a Supporting Actress Oscar as well.
Hollywood and Broadway have adapted “The Taming of the Shrew” on several occasions, including Cole Porter’s musical “Kiss Me, Kate,” which originally appeared on Broadway in 1951 and was revived in 1952 and 1999, and a 1967 film starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.
Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles starred in a modern reimagining of the tale in 1999, Gil Junger’s “10 Things I Hate About You.”
Universal, Working Title and Hathaway’s representatives at CAA all declined to comment on the project.
Hathway, who last year appeared in both “Les Miserables” and “The Dark Knight Rises,” has no projects currently in production. She will lend her voice to “Rio 2,” the sequel to Fox’s successful animated hit, which is in pre-production.