×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Katharine Hepburn Biopic by Indie Producers in the Works (EXCLUSIVE)

A biopic about Hollywood icon Katharine Hepburn is in development by independent producers, based on William J. Mann’s “Kate: The Woman Who Was Hepburn.”

Producers are Richard Akel and Janice Hammond of Four Stars International, and Michael Mosca of Starling Road Productions of Montreal, Canada. Mann will serve as executive producer and consultant.

The picture will be directed by British helmer Clare Beavan, whose credits include BBC’s “Daphne” about novelist Daphne Du Maurier. Producers have hired Michael Zam and Jaffe Cohen, who wrote “Best Actress” about Joan Crawford and Bette Davis’ rivalry, to adapt “Kate.”

The movie will focus on Hepburn’s early years in Hollywood, exploring how she recreated herself from outsider into one of the greatest stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age. Producers plan to surround the main story of the ambitious 25-year-old with accounts of an androgynous teen and a cantankerous 80-year-old legend trying to make peace with the personal costs demanded by her career.

“This is not the Kate Hepburn of public legend, including all those Tracy-Hepburn pictures but rather the much more fascinating and complex private woman,” Akel said. “In reality, she was far more interesting and ultimately more inspiring than the myth she created.”

Hepburn won four Academy Awards for best actress for “Morning Glory,” “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner,” “The Lion in Winter” and “On Golden Pond.” She died in 2003 at the age of 96.

Akel has also been developing a Paul Robeson biopic with shooting set next year in Montreal.

Earlier this year, David Permut and Reunion Pictures announced that they were developing a movie about the 25-year love affair between Hepburn and Spencer Tracy with David Rambo writing the script.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • 45 Seconds of Laughter

    Film Review: '45 Seconds of Laughter'

    “Everyone is worth more than their worst act,” said Roman Catholic sister and anti-death penalty advocate Helen Prejean, and it’s with these words that “45 Seconds of Laughter” closes. It’s an apt sentiment on which to leave Tim Robbins’ sincerely felt documentary study of the therapeutic acting workshops run by his own theater company in [...]

  • Julie Andrews

    Julie Andrews Selected for AFI's Life Achievement Award

    The American Film Institute Board of Trustees has selected Julie Andrews as the recipient of the 48th AFI Life Achievement Award. The award will be presented to Andrews on April 25 in Los Angeles. The ceremony will be telecast on TNT. “Julie Andrews is practically perfect in every way,” said Kathleen Kennedy, chair of the [...]

  • 4127_D001_00007_RC Phyllis Logan stars as Mrs.

    'Downton Abbey' to Dominate Box Office Weekend With $30 Million

    The feature film version of “Downton Abbey” is heading for an impressive $30 million opening weekend at 3,079 sites for an easy victory at the North American box office, early estimates showed Friday. The launch of Brad Pitt’s space drama “Ad Astra” will land in second with about $20 million, while Sylvester Stallone’s action-thriller “Rambo: [...]

  • BETWEEN TWO FERNS, 2019, PH_0027.RAF

    Film Review: 'Between Two Ferns: The Movie'

    If you’re a fan of “Between Two Ferns with Zach Galifianakis,” the fake public-access talk show that Zach Galifianakis has been hosting online, for three to six minutes a pop, over the last 10 years, then you’ll probably like “Between Two Ferns: The Movie,” the snark-lite 82-minute road movie that Galifianakis and his director and [...]

  • The Irishman

    Martin Scorsese, Frances McDormand, Donald Sutherland Join Lineup of France's Lumiere Festival

    Martin Scorsese’s eagerly awaited Netflix movie “The Irishman” wasn’t completed on time to be shown at the Cannes Film Festival, but Thierry Fremaux, Cannes’s topper, managed to pin down the high-profile movie and Scorsese himself for the upcoming Lumiere festival in Lyon next month. Dedicated to heritage movies, the Lumiere festival was created 10 years [...]

  • 'Aladdin' Star Mena Massoud Calls for

    'Aladdin' Star Mena Massoud Calls for a Broader Diversity of Storytelling in Movies and TV

    The star of “Aladdin,” Egyptian-Canadian actor Mena Massoud, called for a greater diversity of storytelling in movies and television when he spoke at the glamorous opening ceremony Thursday of the 3rd edition of Egypt’s El Gouna Film Festival. Massoud, whose credits include Amazon’s “Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan” and Hulu’s “Reprisal,” lauded “the power of art” [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content