Moxie Roxie gives ‘Chi’ try

Zellweger to sing and dance for M'max

NEW YORK — Renee Zellweger is poised to join Catherine Zeta-Jones as the larcenous murdering dancer-singers who topline “Chicago,” the Miramax version of the Tony-winning Bob Fosse musical being prepped by director Rob Marshall for an early 2002 shoot.

While Zellweger wouldn’t seem the most obvious choice for a song-and-dance film, the actress has been eyed for some time by the studio that distributed her last hit, “Bridget Jones’s Diary.”

Zellweger showed off her talents to Marshall in Gotham late last week and demonstrated enough singing and dancing ability to have the director and producers Harvey Weinstein and Martin Richards offer her the role of Roxie. She accepted, and the dealmaking with her CAA agents and manager John Carabino is commencing.

An offer also is out to Kevin Spacey to play sleazy lawyer Billy Flynn, who defends two women on separate murder charges and changes loyalties when one becomes more popular in the press than the other.

Kathy Bates is also said to be under consideration for the role of Mama Morton, the prison matron who is the intermediary between the murderesses and the media.

Craig Zadan and Neil Meron are exec producing the film.

“Chicago” has been a high priority at Miramax for years, but co-chair Weinstein and the musical’s producer Richards were unable to agree on everything — until Oscar-winning “Gods and Monsters” scribe Bill Condon turned in a script that had the duo singing in harmony.

Since then, they have been meeting with numerous versatile actresses. They settled early on Zeta-Jones (Daily Variety, July 11), who has extensive dancing and stage experience. She’s now in negotiations to play Velma, the role originated by Chita Rivera in the stage musical.

Miramax declined comment.

More Film

  • Rashida Jones John Lasseter

    Rashida Jones Denies That She Left 'Toy Story 4' Over Unwanted Advance From John Lasseter

    NEW YORK — Renee Zellweger is poised to join Catherine Zeta-Jones as the larcenous murdering dancer-singers who topline “Chicago,” the Miramax version of the Tony-winning Bob Fosse musical being prepped by director Rob Marshall for an early 2002 shoot. While Zellweger wouldn’t seem the most obvious choice for a song-and-dance film, the actress has been […]

  • Dominique McElligott

    Film News Roundup: Dominique McElligott, Beau Bridges Join Boyd Holbrook's 'Two/One'

    NEW YORK — Renee Zellweger is poised to join Catherine Zeta-Jones as the larcenous murdering dancer-singers who topline “Chicago,” the Miramax version of the Tony-winning Bob Fosse musical being prepped by director Rob Marshall for an early 2002 shoot. While Zellweger wouldn’t seem the most obvious choice for a song-and-dance film, the actress has been […]

  • Coco Pixar

    John Lasseter Allegations Cast Shadow Over Disney-Pixar's 'Coco' Debut

    NEW YORK — Renee Zellweger is poised to join Catherine Zeta-Jones as the larcenous murdering dancer-singers who topline “Chicago,” the Miramax version of the Tony-winning Bob Fosse musical being prepped by director Rob Marshall for an early 2002 shoot. While Zellweger wouldn’t seem the most obvious choice for a song-and-dance film, the actress has been […]

  • John Lasseter

    Pixar's John Lasseter Was the Subject of a 'Whisper Network' for More Than Two Decades

    NEW YORK — Renee Zellweger is poised to join Catherine Zeta-Jones as the larcenous murdering dancer-singers who topline “Chicago,” the Miramax version of the Tony-winning Bob Fosse musical being prepped by director Rob Marshall for an early 2002 shoot. While Zellweger wouldn’t seem the most obvious choice for a song-and-dance film, the actress has been […]

  • Andy Serkis Flarsky

    Andy Serkis Joins Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron in 'Flarsky'

    NEW YORK — Renee Zellweger is poised to join Catherine Zeta-Jones as the larcenous murdering dancer-singers who topline “Chicago,” the Miramax version of the Tony-winning Bob Fosse musical being prepped by director Rob Marshall for an early 2002 shoot. While Zellweger wouldn’t seem the most obvious choice for a song-and-dance film, the actress has been […]

  • John Lasseter Pixar

    John Lasseter Takes Leave of Absence From Disney/Pixar, Apologizes for Unwanted Hugs

    NEW YORK — Renee Zellweger is poised to join Catherine Zeta-Jones as the larcenous murdering dancer-singers who topline “Chicago,” the Miramax version of the Tony-winning Bob Fosse musical being prepped by director Rob Marshall for an early 2002 shoot. While Zellweger wouldn’t seem the most obvious choice for a song-and-dance film, the actress has been […]

  • at&t time warner merger

    AT&T-Time Warner Merger: Does the DOJ Have a Case?

    NEW YORK — Renee Zellweger is poised to join Catherine Zeta-Jones as the larcenous murdering dancer-singers who topline “Chicago,” the Miramax version of the Tony-winning Bob Fosse musical being prepped by director Rob Marshall for an early 2002 shoot. While Zellweger wouldn’t seem the most obvious choice for a song-and-dance film, the actress has been […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content