Gabriel Leone to Star in Michael Mann’s New Film “Ferrari”

Gabriel Leone is revvin’ his engines…

The 28-year-old Brazilian actor  has been set by director Michael Mann to play a key role in Ferrari, which is being prepared for an August 1 production start in Italy.

Gabriel LeoneLeone has just signed with CAA and joins a cast that includes Adam Driver in the title role, alongside Penélope Cruz and Shailene Woodley as the women in his life.

The film is set during the summer of 1957, as the former race car driver-turned-magnate Enzo Ferrari staves off bankruptcy as he looks for salvation with a victory at the Mille Miglia, a treacherous 1,000-mile race in which pre-eminent carmakers battle for bragging rights, with their drivers hurtling around twists and turns at 180 mph. In the backdrop, Ferrari battles with his wife and business partner, Laura, as their marriage disintegrates over the mourning of their son and the acknowledgment of another potential heir.

Leone is playing Alfonso De Portago, who was one of Ferrari’s driving stars and the epitome of the daredevil drivers of that era. He was a handsome and wealthy Spanish aristocrat who captured Europe’s imagination and was a favorite to win the Mille Miglia and his results changed the race forever, but not in the way intended. STX Entertainment has worldwide rights on the film.

Leone became a star in Brazil and gained international attention as the lead in Dom, the first original Amazon series produced in Brazil. The drama became the most-watched non-English-language series worldwide for Amazon. Leone recently completed filming its second season.

Mann directs Ferrari from a script by Troy Kennedy Martin and Mann-based on Brock Yates’ book Enzo Ferrari – The Man and the Machine.

Leone separately starred as the title character in Eduardo e Mônica opposite Alice Braga, and Alemão 2, the sequel to the successful 2014 action movie.

Leone began his career in a theater company performing classic repertoire, making his stage debut in Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew.

He also starred in numerous musicals including Wicked and Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812, for which he was nominated for the principal theater and musical awards in Brazil.

 

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Penélope Cruz to Star in Michael Mann’s Enzo Ferrari Biopic “Ferrari”

Penélope Cruz is revving her engines for a new role…

The 47-year-old Spanish Oscar-winning actress, who earned an Academy Award nod this week, will star in director Michael Mann’s passion project Ferrari.

Penelope CruzCruz is among a roster of All-Star cast members that includes Adam Driver and Shailene Woodley for the big-budget biopic of racing mogul Enzo Ferrari.

Driver is replacing Hugh Jackman in the title role while Parallel Mothers star Cruz will play Enzo’s wife Laura.  Woodley will play mistress Lina Lardi.

Four-time Oscar nominee Mann is gearing up for a May start in Italy.

STX is handling international rights and has now picked up the domestic rights in a big deal with Mann. Amazon is aboard in a handful of international markets. STX International will look to close remaining deals this week with some big international pacts already secured, including Leone in Italy.

The movie, which Mann has been working on for two decades, is set during the summer of 1957. Ex-racecar driver, Ferrari, is in crisis. Bankruptcy stalks the company he and his wife, Laura, built from nothing ten years earlier. Their tempestuous marriage struggles with the mourning for one son and the acknowledgement of another. He decides to counter his losses by rolling the dice on one race – 1,000 miles across Italy, the iconic Mille Miglia.

The project has famously been through multiple iterations, but this is as far along as the casting has been at any stage.

Mann will direct from a script by Troy Kennedy and Mann based on Brock Yates’ book Enzo Ferrari – The Man and the Machine.

“Being able to have these wonderfully talented artists, actors Adam Driver, Penélope Cruz and Shailene Woodley, bring to life these unique characters on location in Modena and the Emilia-Romagna is a vision fulfilled,” says Mann.

Ferrari is so much more than a story about a man and his machine,” says Adam Fogelson, Chairman of STXfilms Motion Picture. “It is an extraordinary and emotional story that Michael has been developing for years and the entire team at STX is looking forward to the start of production with this dream cast and filmmaker. Adam Driver is one of the most talented and fascinating actors working today, and we could not be more thrilled to pair him with Penélope, whose legendary career builds with every role she takes.”

Cruz, nominated this week for the Best Actress Oscar in Parallel Mothers, won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in Vicky Cristina Barcelona and was nominated another two times for her roles in Volver and Nine. In addition to Parallel Mothers for Sony, she currently stars in IFC’s Official Competition opposite Antonio Banderas.