Goldwyn Grabs Goya's Ghosts
Legendary producer Saul Zaentz (Amadeus, The English Patient, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest) has been trying to sell Goya's Ghosts, the new Milos Forman Francisco Goya biopic starring Javier Bardem and Natalie Portman, since Cannes 2006. Samuel Goldwyn Films has finally picked up North American rights, reports THR's Gregg Goldstein:
The Saul Zaentz production, slated for a summer U.S. platform theatrical release, stars Bardem as a member of the clergy during the Spanish Inquisition who becomes obsessed with one of its targets, Goya's muse (Portman). The story follows their personal trials from the late 18th century through the tortured girl's release from prison after Napoleon's invasion of Spain.
"Saul is not only a friend, but a wonderful filmmaker," said Samuel Goldwyn Films CEO Samuel Goldwyn Jr., who was shown the picture by Zaentz several months ago and finalized the deal last week. " 'Ghosts' is a love story and a violent political story and a wonderful woman's story about a fascinating period in history and the effect of the Inquisition's lives as seen through the eyes of Goya. I wish every film we had was as good as this."
"Ghosts" marks the third collaboration between Forman and Zaentz, following two best picture Oscar winners: 1975's "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" and 1984's "Amadeus." It's the director's first film since the 1999 Andy Kaufman biopic "Man on the Moon," starring Jim Carrey. Forman reteamed with "Valmont" partner Jean-Claude Carriere to write the "Ghosts" screenplay.