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Update: Streisand Interested in Starring, Not Directing GYPSY; Producers on Board; Tom Hanks?


Michael Riedel reported in the New York Post today that straight from the mouth of bookwriter Arthur Laurents is word that Barbra Streisand is "deep in negotiations to direct, produce and star in a movie version of GYPSY" for which Laurents has given her approval. 

Laurents, who directed Streisand in her first Broadway show, I CAN GET IT FOR YOU WHOLESALE, and who wrote THE WAY WE WERE for her said that he's has long talks with her on the subject, and that "She had a mother who she always thought was Mama Rose. I don't want to get into the details, but the point is she knows. She's got it in her. She's going to be much more than people expect."

The New York Times has gotten more information on the story, talking to both Arthur Laurents and to Stephen Sondheim who told them that Warner Brothers and Joel Silver are on board as producers, and that he'd (Laurents) suggested Tom Hanks for Herbie, an idea that he says Barbra Streisand loved. 

Laurents also says that Streisand is no longer going to direct the film, as she once wanted to but instead will just play the part. 

This would be the third film of GYPSY having first been made in 1962 (starring Rosalind Russell) and then again in 1993 for television (starring Bette Midler).

Streisand has appeared on Broadway in I CAN GET IT FOR YOU WHOLESALE and FUNNY GIRL. She has also received a special Tony Award. Her film work includes FUNNY GIRL, FUNNY LADY, YENTL, and NUTS. 

She has won numerous awards including the Oscar, Grammy, and Emmy awards.

Barbra's 63rd album, "Love Is The Answer" has been certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), just months after debuting at #1 on the Billboard Charts. This brings the number of gold albums awarded to Barbra to 51. Additionally, Barbra is the recipient of 30 platinum albums and 13 multi-platinum albums.

GYPSY was last seen in a production that was first presented by Encores! from July 9 to 29, 2007 with Patti LuPone playing Rose, and direction by Arthur Laurents. Principal casting included Laura Benanti in the title role of "Gypsy/Louise", with Boyd Gaines as "Herbie", and Leigh Ann Larkin as "Dainty June."

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More On: Michael Riedel, Arthur Laurents, Barbra Streisand, Stephen Sondheim, Warner Brothers, Joel Silver, Tom Hanks.

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