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Jessica Biel, Luke Evans joining 'Vivaldi' film

THR EXCLUSIVE

Jessica Biel and Luke Evans are in final negotiations to topline "Vivaldi," a period romance being produced by Raffaella De Laurentiis.

Patricia Riggen, who directed and produced Fox Searchlight's foreign film release "Under the Same Moon," will helm "Vivaldi."

The project, written by Kevin Lund and T.J. Scott, centers on a forbidden romance that develops between composer, priest and violin virtuoso Antonio Vivaldi and his protege, singer Anna Tessieri Giro, leading him to write his enduring masterpiece "The Four Seasons."

Giro was Vivaldi's favorite prima donna and part of his entourage. Vivaldi at the time denied any romantic relationship, and most modern scholars believe that to be true.

Michael Mosca also is producing the project, which will be selling at the Festival de Cannes.

Biel, repped by CAA and Management 360, most recently appeared in New Line's ensemble romantic comedy "Valentine's Day" and next co-stars in Fox summer action tentpole "The A-Team."

Evans is a rising British actor who is building buzz in Hollywood. He played Apollo in "Clash of the Titans" and is cast as Zeus in Tarsem Singh's Greek epic "Immortals."

He also stars opposite Gemma Arterton in "Tamara Drewe," Stephen Frears' adaptation of a weekly comic strip that is a modern reworking of Thomas Hardy's 19th century novel "Far From the Madding Crowd." The movie will premiere Out of Competition at Cannes and be released stateside in the fall by Sony Pictures Classics.

Evans is repped by WME, Luber Roklin Entertainment and United Artists in London.