Per Deadline, Michelle Williams is in talks to star alongside Hugh Jackman in “The Greatest Showman.” Jackman will play P.T. Barnum in the musical biopic, which charts the rise of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. Zac Efron may be joining the project as well in an as-yet unspecified role.
Though silver-screen musicals aren’t too uncommon in and of themselves, “The Greatest Showman” purports to be Hollywood’s first not based on an existing property since 1992’s “Newsies.” Michael Arndt — who won an Academy Award for his “Little Miss Sunshine” screenplay and has also written or co-written “Toy Story 3,” “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” and “The Force Awakens” — is on script duty. Veteran commercial director Michael Gracey will helm the project, which will feature original songs by the Tony-nominated duo of Justin Paul & Benj Pasek (“The Christmas Story”).
Williams potential role hasn’t been disclosed. Her most recent projects are Kenneth Lonergan’s “Manchester by the Sea” and Kelly Reichardt’s “Certain Women,” both of which premiered to enthusiastic reviews at Sundance and will be released later this year.