Marjane Satrapi has been tapped to direct the Marie Curie biopic with the working title Radioactive. The film is based on the 2010 graphic novel, Radioactive: Marie & Pierre Curie: A Tale of Love and Fallout by Lauren Redniss and will be adapted by Jack Thorne. Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, and Paul Webster are producing with Studiocanal financing.
The story follows Curie and her career, starting at the age of 24 when she moved from Warsaw to Paris. There she fell in love with Pierre Curie and began a lifelong partnership in both marriage and careers in the sciences, which included the discovery of radium and pioneering the field of radioactivity. The story includes Pierre’s death, winning the Nobel Peace Prize twice, and her forbidden love with Paul Langevin, a former doctoral student of her husband and married physicist estranged from his wife.
Satrapi is no stranger to graphic novel adaptations. Her autobiographical graphic novel Persepolis, which she adapted and directed, premiered at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival and tied for the Jury Prize. It won Best Debut Feature at the Césars and later was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, making Satrapi the first female director nominated for the award.
Redniss’ novel was a 2011 National Book Award finalist, the first nonfiction graphic narrative to be nominated for this award. Bevin states that “between the originality of Laura Redniss’ book, the freshness of Jack Thorne’s script, and the visual imagination of Marjane Satrapi’s direction, I think we have the opportunity of making a very original movie about [Curie’s] life work and its consequences.”
Currently, Thorne is adapting the BBC’s mini His Dark Materials and doing a rewrite on Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s thriller Sovereign. He also penned the stage hit play, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.
The search for the three major roles for the Curies and Langevin is underway with a fall shoot planned.