Marleen Gorris will direct $15 million Focus film

Natasha McElhone and James Purefoy will star in historical drama “Heaven & Earth” for Focus Films.

Marleen Gorris will direct the $15 million film, written by Malcolm Kohll and Marsha Levin. David Pupkewitz and Kohll produce.

Story revolves around Britain’s first female doctor, James Miranda Barry (McElhone), who was forced to disguise herself as a man in order to practice medicine. Pic will tell the story of the early 19th century love affair between Barry and the governor of Cape Town, Lord Charles Somerset (Purefoy).

Shooting begins Dec. 10 in the U.K. and will move to Cape Town, South Africa, for six weeks sometime in January.

McElhone stars alongside David Duchovny on the Showtime series “Californication.”

Purefoy stars as the title character in “Solomon Kane,” in post-production. He’s also set to star as Simon Templar in Barry Levinson’s “The Saint” redo next year.

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