Robert Rodriguez (Planet Terror, Sin City, Spy Kids, El Mariachi) will direct Barbarella, a new motion picture adaptation of the classic science-fiction comic book series, it was announced today by producers Dino and Martha De Laurentiis. Universal Pictures will distribute the film, which will be released worldwide in 2008.
Barbarella tells the story of a female mercenary who roams across the universe in a distant future, undertaking missions that require her physical fearlessness, ingenuity and sensuality. In travels that span galaxies known and unknown, Barbarella will challenge tradition, startle the senses and take audiences on an epic adventure of discovery and wonder. Barbarella made her debut in 1962 in a French graphic magazine written and illustrated by Jean-Claude Forest, and her adventures have been published around the world. The first film version, starring Jane Fonda and also produced by Dino De Laurentiis, was released in 1968.
“Dino De Laurentiis came to me and said: ‘”Barbarella” is a world where you are completely free to unleash all your fantasies, creativity and imagination — where the possibilities are limitless,’” commented Robert Rodriguez. “I love this iconic character and all that she represents, and I’m truly excited by the challenge of inviting a new audience into her universe.”
“Barbarella is the ultimate science-fiction adventure heroine: smart, strong and sexy,” said Dino De Laurentiis. “In our vision, the future is female, and I can’t wait to introduce ‘Barbarella’ to a new generation of moviegoers.”
Rodriguez is working with writers Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, who are developing a completely original adventure for Barbarella. Purvis and Wade co-wrote the phenomenally successful Casino Royale and have recently finished work on the next installment in the James Bond franchise, James Bond 22.
“When we decided to take ‘Barbarella’ on again,” noted Martha De Laurentiis, “we wanted the film to play as a big, legitimately exciting adventure in space, but we also know that the character of Barbarella is grounded in a very specific reality. Balancing those aspects requires a very deft hand. With Robert directing and Neal and Robert writing, we feel like we have the dream team in place.”