Femmes front ‘Women’

Midler, Ryan and Bening to star in remake

Bette Midler, Cloris Leachman, Carrie Fisher, Lynn Whitfield, Joanna Gleason, Ana Gasteyer and Debi Mazar have joined “The Women,” the Diane English-directed remake of the 1939 comedy. Pic is currently shooting in Boston.

They join Meg Ryan, Annette Bening, Eva Mendes, Debra Messing, Jada Pinkett-Smith and Candice Bergen, who play friends who discover the pal they envied most is being cheated on by her husband. As in the George Cukor-directed original, English’s film has an entirely female cast.

Pic’s being financed by Inferno, Picturehouse and Dove, the soap-maker that is underwriting part of the budget and will make “The Women” a major cog in a marketing campaign for its female-friendly brand.

Victoria Pearman and Mick Jagger of Jagged Films and Inferno’s Bill Johnson are producing with English.

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