Variety reports that Bob Ellis has penned the screenplay based on Orwell's 1938 book, which centers on the real-life story of Orwell and his wife's travels to Barcelona and their ultimate involvement in the Spanish Civil War in the late 1930's. The film will reportedly focus on the relationship between Orwell and anarchist brigade leader Georges Kopp. It has not been announced which of the two men Spacey and Firth will portray. Hugh Hudson will direct "Catalonia," which is scheduled to film in England, Spain, Buenos Aires, Montevideo and Uruguay in 2010.
Al Clark, who also produced the film of Orwell's "1984," is on board to produce along with Alian Sarde and Fernando Meirelles.
Spacey has served as the artistic director of London's Old Vic Theatre Company since 2003. His London stage credits include National Anthems, The Philadelphia Story, Richard II, A Moon for the Misbegotten, Speed-the-Plow, and The Iceman Cometh, for which he earned the Evening Standard and Olivier Award for Best Actor. Spacey was awarded a Tony for Lost in Yonkers and has been Tony-nominated for his Broadway appearances in the Old Vic transfers of A Moon for the Misbegotten and The Iceman Cometh. His numerous screen credits include Oscar-winning performances in "American Beauty" and "The Usual Suspects," as well as "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil," "Superman Returns," "Pay It Forward" and "HurlyBurly."