U.S. actor to play Mr. Darcy

LONDON — Director Gurinder Chadha will follow up her breakthrough hit “Bend It Like Beckham” with a modern-day Bollywood musical version of Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice.”

The project, financed by Pathe, is in early pre-production, with a view to shooting next March.

Mr. Darcy, the romantic lead, will be played by an American actor, backed up by an all-star Bollywood cast to be announced shortly.

Chadha and her co-writer Paul Mayeda Berges are currently in India working on the music and lyrics. The writing and recording of the songs must be completed before the start of principal photography, which will take place in India, the U.K. and the U.S.

Pathe will release the pic in the U.K. and France, as well as handling worldwide sales.

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