“In Pablo Larran’s biopic, Valeria Golino co-stars with Angelina Jolie as Maria Callas’ sister,,

With several additional cast members already on board, Pablo Larran’s Maria Callas biopic “Maria” is scheduled to begin filming in Budapest in the middle of October. Angelina Jolie will play the main character.

While renowned Turkish screen and stage veteran Haluk Bilginer (“Winter Sleep”) has landed the role of Greek tycoon Aristotle Onassis, Italian star Valeria Golino (“The Lying Life of Adults”), who recently starred as the lead in Netflix’s Elena Ferrante series “The Lying Life of Adults,” and season 2 of Apple Original “The Morning Show,” are set to play Jackie’s older sister Yakinthi.

Alba Rohrwacher, Pierfrancesco Favino, and Oscar-nominated Australian actor Kodi Smit-McPhee are among the Italian A-listers who appear in “Maria,” according to Fremantle, one of the firms producing the movie.

The logline of the movie “Maria” describes it as “telling the tumultuous, beautiful, and tragic story of the life of the world’s greatest opera singer, relived and re-imagined during her final days in 1970s Paris.” Writing the script was Steven Knight (“Spencer,” “Peaky Blinders,” “Eastern Promises”).

 

“One of the most renowned opera singers of the 20th century was Greek American soprano singer Maria Callas. She was raised in Manhattan and was trained in opera when she was 13 before relocating to Italy to pursue her career. She struggled with nearsightedness over the years, which nearly rendered her blind, as well as numerous controversies in her personal and professional lives. In addition to having an affair with Aristotle Onassis (who subsequently wed Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, who ironically was the subject of Larran’s film “Jackie”), she also had a bitter feud with Italian opera soprano Renata Tebaldi.

Larran’s last two biopics—”Spencer” from a year ago with Kristen Stewart as Princess Diana and “Jackie” from 2016 with Natalie Portman as Kennedy Onassis—received nods for best actress. For his 2012 Chilean historical drama “No,” the acclaimed director was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Picture, marking the nation’s first nomination.

I’m overjoyed to have the chance to wrap up this process of portraying women who, culturally speaking, impacted the 20th century, Larrain said in a June interview with Variety. And it concerns an artist this time. And it’s brought on by my respect for her life and work,” he continued.

 

Producing “Maria” are Lorenzo Mieli for The Apartment Pictures, a Fremantle Company, Jonas Dornbach for Germany’s Komplizen Film, and Juan de Dios Larran for Fabula.

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