Rob Marshall will direct a feature version of the stage hit "Nine" for the Weinstein Co.
It marks the first time that Marshall and Harvey Weinstein have joined forces since "Chicago," the 2002 Miramax musical which won six Oscars, including best picture.
Pic will be produced by Marshall and John DeLuca through their Lucamar Productions banner. Marshall and DeLuca will also choreograph the film together, as they did "Chicago."
Marshall and TWC co-chairmen Harvey and Bob Weinstein are in the process of securing a screenwriter.
Music and lyrics are by Maury Yeston, composer and lyricist of the original 1982 Broadway production that was written by Arthur Kopit. TWC acquired rights from Kopit and Yeston, who'll be co-exec producers.
Originally adapted by Mario Fratti, with a book by Kopit, the musical was inspired by the Fellini film "8½" and focused on a film director stuck in neutral as he tries to make a film while haunted by the demands of all the women in his life, including a wife, mistress and even his deceased mother.
The original stage production was directed by Tommy Tune and starred Raul Julia, with Liliane Montevecchi and Anita Morris heading the list of women who haunted him. The musical won five Tony Awards including best musical. Antonio Banderas starred in a 2002 revival which won two Tony Awards, including best revival.
"After I finished 'Memoirs of a Geisha,' I began looking intensely at (other projects), including remakes of movies, originals and Broadway musicals," Marshall said. " 'Nine' (has) a seamlessness between reality and fantasy that is built into the fabric of the material."
Marshall said he'd like to lock in his leading man and actresses early, and custom fit the script to them.
"This one needs to be created specifically for the talent involved, to suit their strenghts," he said.Casting will be a big issue here, and if commitments complicates things, it will be 2009."
In a statement, Weinstein called the musical, "A brilliant and timeless masterpiece. Teaming up with (Marshall) and the cast he's putting together will be something we've never experienced before."