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Mary Magdalene biopic in the works

Story by Jack Foley

A NEW film about the life of Mary Magdalene is moving into production by the maker of the Oscar-winning British period drama The King’s Speech.

The as-yet untitled film is being penned by Helen Edmundson and Philippa Goslett, and directed by Garth Davis, who co-directed the critically acclaimed Jane Campion television series Top of the Lake.

Mary Magdalene was a follower of Jesus Christ who, according to The Bible, witnesses his crucifixion and resurrection.

However, she remains a controversial figure given her relationship to Jesus, which has been provocatively explored in both Martin Scorsese’s The Last Temptation of Christ, which featured fantasy scenes of Jesus making love to her, and in Ron Howard’s adaptation of The Da Vinci Code, which placed her relationship with Jesus at the centre of one of the world’s great conspiracy theories.

She has also been portrayed by Monica Bellucci in Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ as well as by Joanna Dunham in 1965’s The Greatest Story Ever Told.

The new project is being put together at See-Saw Films under producers Iain Canning and Emile Sherman, in partnership with Film4 and studio Universal.

According to Deadline, Davis hopes to start shooting this summer (2016).

Peter Kujawski and Robert Walak, of Universal Pictures International Productions, told Deadline: “Mary Magdalene is a strong character, who was so unique in her time, and her story will give audiences a chance to experience the cultural turbulence, human passions, and devotional beliefs that set in motion so much of modern history.

“We are thrilled to partner with Iain and Emile at See-Saw on this project, who have a track record for developing compelling material with a focus on quality. We’re certain that Garth’s artistic vision will deliver an incredibly powerful new perspective on one of the world’s most well-known origin stories.”

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