EXCLUSIVE: The Weinstein Company is closing in on a deal for U.S. and Canada on the Mary Magdalene biopic that Rooney Mara is being pursued for. Talks are ongoing and a deal should close shortly, but has not closed yet. It would mark the Weinstein Co’s latest collaboration with producer See-Saw Films, following on from The King’s Speech, Macbeth and Lion.
Mara is currently engaged in discussions to play Mary Magdalene in Garth Davis’ biopic of the figure. Universal Pictures International Productions is partnering with See-Saw on the biopic, which is set to be an authentic and humanistic portrait of one of the most enigmatic and misunderstood spiritual figures in history. Mara can currently be seen in her Oscar-nominated role in Carol, and an upcoming untitled Terrence Malick film, as well as Davis’ Lion, scheduled for release at the end of the year.
Davis will direct the new movie from a script by Helen Edmundson and Philippa Goslett. Production is set to begin this summer for an anticipated release in 2017. See-Saw’s Iain Canning and Emile Sherman, who have grown from strength to strength ever since they conquered the box office and awards season in partnership with the Weinstein Co. with The King’s Speech, will produce. Davis and See-Saw also worked together on the TV series Top Of The Lake.
The film will be overseen at Universal by UPIP managing director Peter Kujawski and recently appointed co-managing director Robert Walak, who negotiated the deal along with UPIP Business Affairs head Alexander Jooss. Walak joined Universal from the Weinstein Co last October. Film4 co-developed the project.
Universal will release the film in all international territories except Australia and New Zealand, where it will be handled by See Saw’s longtime partners Transmission Films.