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MADRID – Pedro Almodóvar has set his next film: the Spanish-language “Silencio,” Variety has confirmed.

Almodóvar described the project to the Financial Times as a “hard-hitting drama which excites me,” reprising “the cinema of women, of great female protagonists.”

“Silencio” is set up at Madrid’s El Deseo, the Spanish production label founded by Pedro and brother Agustin Almodovar. It will be produced by Agustin Almodovar.

“‘Silencio’ is still in the early stages of definition, in the early stages of casting, with pre-locations, defining the scale of production,” Agustin Almodóvar told Variety on Saturday.

Returning to a femme drama, a film mode that has given Almodóvar some of his greatest successes, from 1995’s “The Flower of My Secret” through 1999’s “All About My Mother,” a Foreign Language Academy Award winner, to 2006’s “Volver,” with Penelope Cruz, reckoned one of the best films Almodóvar has ever directed, “Silencio” also looks set to open up the chance of a lifetime for an Spanish-speaking actress: Pedro Almodóvar admitted to the Financial Times that casting, which is currently taking place, will be “complicated because what I’ve written doesn’t quite work with my ‘actores amigos.’”

Very little is known about “Silencio’s” storyline. The new movie’s title does refer, however, to “the principal element that drives the worst things that happen to the main female protagonist,” Almodovar hinted to the Financial Times.

In London for the new stage musical of “Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown,” Pedro Almodóvar added that the new film’s screenplay is complete.

“Silencio” will go into production in April. As with some of his other great femme dramas, where Almodóvar has used different locations of Spain for their psychological and emotional impact on his often troubled or challenged women protagonists, “Silencio” will shoot in Madrid and other parts of Spain, Almodóvar already announced at last October’s Lumière Festival in France’s Lyon where, following in the footsteps of Clint Eastwood and Quentin Tarantino, he received its prestigious Lumière Prize for career achievement.

(Emiliano de Pablos contributed to this report.)