Annaleigh Ashford to Play Judy Holliday in SMART BLONDE
Gene Kirkwood will produce the film, which will focus on Holliday, a nightclub singer who in her early acting career in the 1940s fought back against the overt sexual advances of studio mogul Darryl F. Zanuck during her time as a day player at Fox. She later went on to star on Broadway in "Born Yesterday," then won the Best Actress Oscar for George Cukor's big-screen adaptation starring alongside William Holden and Broderick Crawford.
Holliday paid the price for being outspoken, eventually blacklisted in Hollywood as a communist. She died of breast cancer in 1965 at age 43.
Kirkwood spoke on the news saying, "Judy Holiday's story is one for the ages and yet so relatable within the context of today's headlines."
Ashford starred on Broadway in Sylvia (Drama League nom.), You Can't Take It With You (Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle awards), Kinky Boots (Clarence Derwent Award, Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle noms.), Wicked, Hair, Legally Blonde. Off-Broadway, she could be seen in Sunday in the Park With George (Encores!), Rent (Drama League, Clive Barnes Award noms.), and Dogfight.
Ashford just finished shooting Bad Education and she appears next in Unbelievable, the Netflix limited series starring Merritt Wever, Toni Collette and KAITLYN DEVER. She played Elizabeth Cote in Ryan Murphy's American Crime Story: Versace, and she also starred in Showtime's Masters of Sex.
Read the original article on Deadline.