Cate Blanchett has signed on to star in director Pedro Almodóvar‘s first English-language film, A Manual For Cleaning Women, an adaptation of Lucia Berlin‘s short story collection of the same name which includes 43 stories about women in multiple types of demanding jobs.
The project is only in the earliest stages of development right now, with Blanchett”s production company Dirty Films producing the feature for New Republic Pictures, in association with El Deseo, which was founded by Almodóvar.
Almodóvar previously told Variety that he originally envisioned the project in his native Spanish, going so far as to begin penning the script in Spanish before translating it to English and forging ahead with his first English-language feature. His only other project in English was his 2020 short film The Human Voice, which starred Tilda Swinton.
Almodóvar’s films are known for their melodrama, irreverent humour, and bold colours, and he made international stars out of Penelope Cruz and Antonio Banderas. He won the Best Original Screenplay Oscar for Talk To Her in 2002, and has also directed such films as Volver, The Skin In Live In, and All About My Mother. His latest film, Parallel Mothers, was released late last year.
Almodóvar is also known for his frequent depiction of complex female protagonists, so it makes sense that Blanchett would be drawn to A Manual For Cleaning Women.
Blanchett recently appeared in Don’t Look Up and Nightmare Alley, and currently has a busy 2022 scheduled, with Todd Field‘s drama TÁR, Guillermo Del Toro‘s animated version of Pinocchio, and Eli Roth‘s video game adaptation Borderlands all due out this year.