Mamet’s ‘Spartan’ maid

Legit thesp to star in political pic

Broadway theater ingenue Kristen Bell has transferred to the bigscreen, inking to appear in the Warner Bros./Franchise Pictures feature “Spartan,” written and directed by David Mamet.

Currently lensing, pic follows the kidnapping of the daughter of a senior American government official and the chaos and duplicity that ensues in trying to bring her home without scandal. While the official is never seen, several of his minions are, including topliners William H. Macy, Val Kilmer and Derek Luke (“Antwone Fisher”).

Franchise principal Elie Samaha, Moshe Diamant and Art Linson are producing the pic.

Bell has made an immediate name for herself onstage, appearing in Scott Ellis’ 2001 Broadway production of “Tom Sawyer” and more recently the revival of Arthur Miller’s “The Crucible,” starring Liam Neeson and Laura Linney, in 2002.

Bell next toplines the Goth figure-skating musical “Sneaux!” at the Matrix Theater in Los Angeles, beginning June 26. Music and lyrics were written by Lori Scarlett, with a book by screenwriter Tim Garrick (“Blind Sided”).

Bell has also appeared on cabler FX’s cop skein “The Shield” and NBC’s “American Dreams.”

Mamet most recently helmed and scripted 2001’s “The Heist,” also for Franchise Pictures. Below-the-line budget for “Spartan” is estimated to be $12 million-$13 million.

Warner Bros. exec VP of production Kevin McCormick is overseeing the project.

Bell was repped in the deal by Cunningham Escott Dipene and manager Brian Medavoy.

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