Ridley Scott Planning on Directing His Own Film About Gertrude Bell
Back in February we learned that director Werner Herzog was looking to cast Naomi Watts in Queen of the Desert, the true story of British woman Gertrude Bell, who was a well-known traveler, writer, archaeologist, explorer, cartographer and political attaché for the British Empire at the dawn of the twentieth century. Now Deadline reports Ridley Scott (Robin Hood, American Gangster) has just set The Constant Gardener screenwriter Jeffrey Caine to write a screenplay about Bell for him to direct. Scott and producer Giannina Facio at Scott Free think this will be a great role for an actress to really spread her wings and show her talent.
As a bit of a refresher, Wikipedia says Bell "played a major role in establishing and helping administer the modern state of Iraq, utilizing her unique perspective from her travels and relations with tribal leaders throughout the Middle East. During her lifetime she was highly esteemed and trusted by British officials and given an immense amount of power for a woman at the time. She has also been described as 'one of the few representatives of His Majesty's Government remembered by the Arabs with anything resembling affection."
Of course, Scott is currently busy directing Prometheus, which should still be an Alien prequel. In addition, Scott has been linked a project about the Gucci dynasty and maybe an adaptation of The Wolf of Wall Street with Leonardo DiCaprio. But in reality, the director/producer has more than 20 projects listed as being in development on IMDb, so this Gertrude Bell project may not go anywhere for awhile. Consequently, I don't think this will have any effect on Herzog's project since the filmmaker already has a script and has his sights on Naomi Watts to lead the film. Thoughts?