Angelina Jolie‘s last live-action acting job was the disappointing The Tourist, but the actress-filmmaker is now poised to star in a new project that sounds much more intriguing. Titled Gertrude Bell, the biopic centers around the woman who’s been described as “the female Lawrence of Arabia” for her role in helping to establish the modern states of Jordan and Iraq in the early 20th century. Ridley Scott‘s Scott Free Productions is developing the picture, announced in March, with Scott himself still eyeing the director’s chair. More details after the jump.

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It’s like the space race all over again, only with a lot less tension, and sand instead of stars. Is there really enough interest in writer/political officer/archaeologist Gertrude Bell that development on parallel film projects is warranted? Not to diminish her accomplishments — she was quite a woman — but it seems strange nonetheless. And yet here we are, and better this than two more fairy tale movies. Werner Herzog is developing Queen of the Desert, possibly with Naomi Watts starring, and now Ridley Scott is getting to work on his own Gertrude Bell movie. Is this a Highlander situation? Can there be only one? Read More »