Bettany, Connelly to star in ‘Creation’

Amiel to direct thriller/love story about Darwins

Husband-and-wife team Paul Bettany and Jennifer Connelly have boarded helmer Jon Amiel’s “Creation.”

The thesps will play Charles and Emma Darwin in the pic, described as part ghost story, part psychological thriller and part love story.

“Creation” will follow Darwin as a young man, struggling to cope with the loss of a child. John Colley (“Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World”) penned the script, based on the book “Annie’s Box,” written by Darwin’s great-great-grandson Randal Keynes.

Jeremy Thomas is producing via his Recorded Picture Co. Pic was co-developed with BBC Films and public funding org the U.K. Film Council.

Jeremy Northam (“The Tudors”), Toby Jones (“Frost/Nixon”) and Benedict Cumberbatch (“Atonement”) have all joined the cast.

Lensing begins Sept. 28. Locations include the Darwins’ home, Down House, in what was then the Kent village of Bromley, which has now been swallowed by London.

Release is skedded for 2009, the bicentenary of Darwin’s birth. Icon Film Distribution has acquired U.K. and Australian theatrical rights. HanWay Films is handling worldwide sales.