“Sissi” the beloved Austrian royal who was made world-famous by actress Romy Schneider in the 1957 film, is getting a makeover.
Two, in fact.
Austrian director Joshua Sinclair, whose latest pic “Jump” is about the murder trial of photographer Philippe Halsman, said he is focusing his attention on Elisabeth, the beloved empress of Austria and queen of Hungary.
Only this time the warts will be visible.
“We’re going to tell the story of a woman, and how power can take a character and turn them into a caricature of themselves,” the outspoken director told Variety. “After all, she had gonorrhea and such. All that couldn’t be shown in the earlier pic.”
(In the earlier version, Sissi contracts “consumption.”)
Titled “Majesty,” Sinclair has already lined up photographer Vittorio Storaro as his d.p. and Sybil Danning (“Grindhouse” and “Jump”) to play the duchess of Bavaria, Sissi’s mother. Sissi herself is not yet cast.
In Cannes, American world Pictures is handling sales on “Jump,” which toplines Patrick Swayze; no distrib has been determined for “Majesty.”
On the Continent, the Sissi story is as resonant as Queen Elizabeth’s is in the U.K.
And inevitably some folks think there’s humor to be milked from it.
German director Bully Herbig is in post on an animated satire called “Lissi and the Wild Emperor,” which is a thinly veiled spoof on the Sissi-Emperor Franz Joseph duo.