EXCLUSIVE: David Scarpa has come aboard to rewrite Cleopatra, Sony Pictures’ epic project based on the Stacy Schiff bestselling book Cleopatra: A Life. The other elements are the same on this, with Angelina Jolie attached to play the title character and Scott Rudin and Amy Pascal producing it.

This one got close to the start line once with James Cameron ready to direct, before Fox kept him in the fold with a massive deal to helm his Avatar sequels. David Fincher has also circled the project. There’s no director committed at this point, but it’s good to see the project moving forward again. It’s one of the great epic historical female empowerment tales, and the kind of bold project with global appeal that is top priority at Sony, if it can be brought in at a manageable budget.

Scarpa’s TriStar script All The Money In The World made the Black List last year, and he wrote a draft of the Alexander Litvinenko project for Graham King. He’s repped by Gersh, and David Beaubaire is overseeing for the studio.