Julian Fellowes Will Author Gypsy Screenplay for Barbra Streisand Film

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13 Mar 2012

Barbra Streisand
Barbra Streisand

Academy Award-winning screenwriter Julian Fellowes has been enlisted to adapt the screen remake of Gypsy, the iconic showbiz musical by Arthur Laurents, Jule Styne and Stephen Sondheim, which will star Barbra Streisand.

Tony, Grammy and Academy Award winner Streisand (Funny Girl, "Yentl," "The Way We Were") will star as Rose in the film that she is developing along with Joel Silver ("Sherlock Holmes," "The Matrix") for Universal Pictures.

Fellowes is the book writer of Broadway's Mary Poppins and is also the creator of the hit BBC/PBS series "Downton Abbey." He earned an Oscar for "Gosford Park."

Tony-winning Gypsy book writer Arthur Laurents, who died in May 2011 at the age of 93, had signed off on Streisand's plans for a new film of the property. Gypsy has music by Styne and lyrics by Sondheim.

Rosalind Russell starred in the 1962 film adaptation of the musical and Bette Midler lead a 1993 made-for--television version. Gypsy was most recently revived in 2008 with Patti LuPone as Rose. Bernadette Peters (2003), Tyne Daly (1989) and Angela Lansbury (1974) also starred in Broadway revivals of the musical. Ethel Merman created the role of the unstoppable stage mother in the original 1959 Broadway production.