A TV drama series about the life of Hollywood icon Audrey Hepburn is being developed by Wildside, the expanding Italian production company behind “The Young Pope” and “My Brilliant Friend,” with plans to start shooting in 2020.
The Oscar-winning actress was one of Hollywood’s most recognizable faces of the 20th century and was celebrated for her charm and elegance in such films as “Sabrina,” “Roman Holiday,” “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” and “My Fair Lady.” But her life has not yet been portrayed in a high-end skein for the global marketplace.
Wildside, which is owned by global production and distribution giant Fremantle, has announced that its still-untitled English-language show will be based on a treatment co-written by Luca Dotti, Hepburn’s son, and Italian journalist and writer Luigi Spinola. Dotti’s father was Italian psychiatrist Andrea Dotti, whom Hepburn married in 1970 and divorced 10 years later.
Dotti and Spinola co-authored the 2015 bestseller “Audrey at Home,” a part-biography, part-cookbook combining anecdotes, excerpts from Hepburn’s correspondence, her recipes and unpublished family photographs. Their research has now gone deeper, in particular when it comes to Hepburn’s “formative years,” which the series will explore, according to a statement from Wildside. Fuller details of the project have not been disclosed.
Hepburn revolutionized movie glamour with inspired film performances and an understated allure that brought a unique level of class and grace to Hollywood. “With her penchant for couture, she became a groundbreaking style icon in an era of sexpot starlets, melding some of the screen’s most memorable characters with her own regal charm and sophistication,” as a Variety profile put it.
Among her honors were an Oscar for “Roman Holiday,” an Emmy, a Grammy, a Tony, the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. She died in 1993 at 63.
The new TV project based on her life is an indication that Rome-based Wildside, which is operated by producers Mario Gianani and Lorenzo Mieli, is stepping up the scope and ambition of its international co-productions following the success of Paolo Sorrentino’s “The Young Pope” and of Elena Ferrante adaptation “My Brilliant Friend,” both of which have sold worldwide. Sorrentino is currently shooting “The New Pope,” and a second season of “My Brilliant Friend” was announced last week.
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