Steven Soderbergh is developing a 3-D live-action rock ’n’ roll musical about Cleopatra to be called “Cleo” and he is asking Catherine Zeta-Jones to play the Egyptian queen and Hugh Jackman to play her lover, Marc Antony.
Projected to cost $30 million “Cleo” will be shopped for financing and distribution within the next two weeks. Greg Jacobs is producing with Casey Silver.
The music has been written by the indie rock band Guided by Voices, and the script is by James Greer, a former bass player for the band and writer for “Max Keeble’s Big Move“.
While Soderbergh’s recent history includes a spate of wildly different projects, this one will be his first full-blown musical.
Soderbergh, who’s about to release the Benicio Del Toro vehicle “Che” and wrapped Matt Damon vehicle “The Informant,” is also prepping a Richard LaGravanese (P.S. I Love You, The Bridges of Madison County) scripted Liberace film at Warner Bros., with Michael Douglas attached to play the entertainer and Damon to play his companion, who sued him for palimony.
Before “Cleo,” Soderbergh’s directing “The Girlfriend Experience,” setting porn star Sasha Grey to play a $10,000-a-night call girl in a film that will be simultaneously distributed in theaters, on DVD and on the HDNet movie channel by Mark Cuban and Todd Wagner’s HDNet label.