Like a mirage that seems to vanish in the arid air, Naomi Watts has departed Werner Herzog’s new film, “Queen of the Desert,” but been replaced by someone of equally impressive star magnitude in Nicole Kidman. The news comes out of the Toronto International Film Festival, which is where all news should be coming out of this week. The film co-stars James Franco and Robert Pattinson and tells the story of real-life 20th century explorer Gertrude Bell. Expect lots of sand and those old timey explorer helmets.
The casting switcheroo isn’t unique for the project, which charts Bell’s involvement in the formation of the Middle East at the dawn of the 20th century, as Jude Law was originally slated for the production, only to be replaced by Franco.
Kidman will star as, in the words of the report, an “iconic explorer, writer, archeologist and attaché for the British Empire.” We can see Kidman really sinking her teeth into the role, which is described as having a similar vibe as “Lawrence of Arabia.” Sounds pretty killer to us.
The actress can be seen at Toronto in “The Railway Man” (you can read our review right now), which is currently seeking acquisition and will be all over the Oscar prognosticators' forecasts when “Grace of Monaco” (where the star plays Grace Kelly) is released by The Weinstein Company on November 27th.