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Zendaya to star as Cleopatra in Denis Villeneuve’s historical epic



Denis Villeneuve, the acclaimed director behind films like “Blade Runner 2049” and “Arrival,” has some exciting projects lined up for the future. According to recent reports, his next film after “Dune: Part II” will be a historical drama centered around the life of Cleopatra. This news confirms earlier rumors and adds to the anticipation surrounding Villeneuve’s upcoming works.

The screenplay for “Cleopatra” is said to be written by David Scarpa, known for his work on “Napoleon.” The film will be based on the best-selling book by Stacey Schiff, delving into Cleopatra’s ruthless rise to power and her adept use of seduction. It’s important to note that this new adaptation is expected to take a different approach than the iconic 1963 film starring Elizabeth Taylor.


What makes this project even more intriguing is the casting choices. It has been revealed that Zendaya, the talented actress known for her roles in “Euphoria” and “Spider-Man: No Way Home,” has accepted the offer to portray the young queen of Egypt.

Additionally, Timothée Chalamet, who has gained critical acclaim for his performances in films like “Call Me by Your Name” and “Little Women,” has been offered the role of Octavius. The filmmakers are also reportedly seeking Daniel Craig to play Caesar, adding another layer of star power to the production.

Production will start in 2024

Villeneuve himself expressed his excitement about the project in an interview last year, stating: “I also have a historical film project on the life of Cleopatra. This project is underway and it excites me a lot.” With his track record of delivering visually stunning and thought-provoking films, fans can expect Villeneuve to bring a fresh perspective to this iconic figure from history.


It’s worth mentioning that there has already been a famous Cleopatra movie released in 1963, starring Elizabeth Taylor. While it received mixed reviews, it was a commercial success and provided an intriguing look at Ancient Egypt during Cleopatra’s reign. However, Scarpa has indicated that this new adaptation will take a different approach, describing it as a “political thriller” with a hard R rating.

He promises a lean and mean two-hour film filled with political intrigue, assassinations, and all the gritty elements that make a thrilling thriller. As production is set to begin in 2024, fans of Villeneuve and historical dramas alike can eagerly anticipate the release of “Cleopatra.” With an incredible cast and a director known for his meticulous attention to detail, this film has all the makings of a captivating and unforgettable cinematic experience.