Pathé and Calamity Films have set a February 2018 start date for principal photography on Judy, based on the true story of Judy Garland's final concerts in London. Actress Renee Zellweger, Academy Award winner and three times Academy Award nominee (Bridget Jones's Diary, Cold Mountain and Chicago), will play Judy Garland; and celebrated British stage director, Rupert Goold (a Tony nominee and two times Olivier winner) will direct. No release date has been set at this time and it remains to be seen how many more roles need to be filled out.

The story is set in Winter 1968 and showbiz legend Judy Garland arrives in Swinging London to perform in a sell-out run at The Talk of the Town. It is 30 years since she shot to global stardom in The Wizard of Oz, but if her voice has weakened, its dramatic intensity has only grown. As she prepares for the show, battles with management, charms musicians, and reminisces with friends and adoring fans, her wit and warmth shine through. Even her dreams of romance seem undimmed as she embarks on a courtship with Mickey Deans, her soon-to-be fifth husband. And yet Judy is fragile. After working for 45 of her 47 years, she is exhausted; haunted by memories of a childhood lost to Hollywood; gripped by a desire to be back home with her kids. Will she have the strength to go on?

Featuring some of her best-known songs, the film celebrates the voice, the capacity for love and the sheer pizzazz of "the world's greatest entertainer". The film is based on a script written by Tom Edge (The Crown) and will be produced by BAFTA winner David Livingstone (Pride) for Calamity Films. Pathé will distribute the film in the UK, France and Switzerland and will handle sales throughout the rest of the world. This movie will be set roughly a year before her death in July 1969, from an accidental overdose of barbiturates, at the age of 47.

Related: Judy Trailer Has Renee Zellweger Channeling Hollywood Icon Judy Garland

Renee Zellweger is coming off the faith-based true story adaptation Same Kind of Different As Me, where she co-stars alongside Greg Kinnear and Djimon Hounsou. She will next be seen in Best Day Of My Life alongside Sarah Jessica Parker, Taylor Kinney, Jacqueline Bisset, Simon Baker and Common, and Berlin, I Love You. She had a six-year hiatus from the big screen between 2010 and 2016, when she returned with a pair of movies, The Whole Truth and Bridget Jones' Baby.

Pathé operates as a fully integrated film studio in France, the UK, the Netherlands and Switzerland. It is involved in all aspects of filmmaking, from development and production through to international sales, distribution and exhibition. Films produced/distributed by Pathé range from The Queen to Slumdog Millionaire and from Philomena to Selma. In recent years Pathé's productions have won 16 BAFTAs (66 nominations) and 13 Oscars (46 nominations). Pathé International handles the international marketing and sales of Pathé's own productions and also acquires third party films for worldwide representation. As one of Europe's leading sales agents, Pathé International has a significant presence at all major film markets and festivals. Learn more at Pathe.co.uk.

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