Thesp to appear alongside sister as disabled twins

BERLIN — Dakota Fanning’s bid to shed her moppet image continues apace.

Having scandalized Sundance by playing a rape victim in “Hounddog,” she is now set to appear alongside her sister Elle Fanning as disabled twins in Arvin Brown’s true-life drama “Hurricane Mary.”

Pic tells the true story of an Irish-American mother, played by Patricia Clarkson, who fought a long battle for the rights of her handicapped yet gifted daughters to have a public school education.

London-based Hanway is handling worldwide sales, with production scheduled for September in New York.

The cast also includes Chris Cooper, William H. Macy, Laura San Giacomo and Jordi Molla.

Script is by Marianne Leone. Producer is Andrea Simon, with Brown and Joseph Burga of Bel Films serving as exec producers.

The 66-year-old Brown is a veteran theater and TV director whose only previous feature was “Diary of the Dead” in 1980. His TV credits include “Ally McBeal,” “The Practice” and “The Closer,”

“This film has been a labor of love for all involved. When this story is told, the world will know why,” said Simon. .”

“This is one of the most powerful and moving scripts I’ve read in a long time, and it’s not by chance that the project has attracted a cast of such a high caliber,” said Hanway topper Tim Haslam.

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more