Tale is based on O'Nan novel, adapted by Price

Monsoon Entertainment will finance and produce Christina Ricci’s directorial debut, “The Speed Queen.”

Ricci will also star in the dark comedy, to be produced by Adam Del Deo along with Tri-Tone Entertainment in association with Ricci’s production company, Blaspheme Films. Production is expected to begin in the first half of 2002.

David Linde’s Good Machine Intl. will handle foreign sales for Monsoon, while Monsoon president and chief operating officer Arnaud Duteil and Emmanuel Itier will serve as executive producers. Script, based on the eponymous novel by Stuart O’Nan, was adapted by Brian Price.

Ricci will attend next month’s Sundance Film Festival with HBO’s “The Laramie Project,” “Miranda” and “Pumpkin,” the latter of which she also produced. She also stars in and produced “Prozac Nation,” which Miramax will release next year.

Based in Los Angeles, director Alfonso Cuaron (“A Little Princess”) and entrepreneur Jorge Vergara created Monsoon with former Canal Plus exec Duteil. Matthew Richmond is Monsoon’s director of development.

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