According to The Hollywood Reporter, Audrey Tautou is ready to make her American film debut. The French actress, starring in A Very Long Engagement and best known for playing the title role in Amelie, is in negotiations to star opposite Tom Hanks in Columbia Pictures' The Da Vinci Code.

Ron Howard is directing the screen adaptation of the Dan Brown best seller.

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Tautou would play French cryptologist Sophie Neveu. It is her grandfather's murder in the Louvre that brings her and a Harvard professor (Hanks) together to search for his killer as they also try to unravel a secret that involves the foundation of Christianity.

Jean Reno also is on board, playing Detective Bezu Fache. Production is scheduled to begin in mid-2005 with an eye for a May 19, 2006, release.