Angelina Jolie To Play Gertrude Bell Middle East Leader

Angelina Jolie Gertrude Bell – Angelina Jolie has attached herself to star in Gertrude Bell, a biopic of a pioneering figure in the Middle East in the early 20th Century. The actress has made a career out of playing strong female characters. The new film is about another iconic woman leader.

The project is being developed by Ridley Scott’s Scott Free Productions. Scott also is mulling directing the pic, one of three on his shortlist that insiders say he wants to tackle after his Alien prequel-of-sorts Prometheus, which hits theaters in June.

Bell has been described as the female Lawrence of Arabia for the impact the English woman had in the Middle East and her work in establishing what would become the modern framework for Jordan and Iraq. With a passion for archeology and languages, she wrote about her adventures in the Ottoman Empire and desert kingdoms, traveling in not only a predominantly male world but one whose culture and religion was very alien to the British Empire.

During World War I, Bell worked for British Intelligence and was a key asset to the English¹s dismantling of the Ottoman Empire and founding of Iraq, even winning the admiration many Arabs as she navigated tribes, diplomats and soldiers.

Jeffrey Caine is writing the screenplay, tooling it as a vehicle for Jolie. The project is not set up at a studio and is still in development.

Jolie, whose directorial debut In the Land of Blood and Honey hits theaters next month, has a number of acting projects in development. She’s attached to play Kay Scarpetta in an adaptation of the popular Patricia Cornwell novels, as well as Disney’s Maleficent. Angelina’s sequel to her hit action pic Salt is also being written.

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