'Drive' Director Nicolas Winding Refn to Bring 'Barbarella' to the Small Screen

Nicolas Winding Refn - Photocall Head Shot - 2010
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Gaumont International Television and Martha De Laurentiis will produce the series about the iconic sex symbol fighting evil.

Barbarella will be getting a sexy small screen makeover from Nicolas Winding Refn and producers Gaumont International Television and Martha De Laurentiis.

The Drive director will put his auteur mark on the iconic character made famous by Jane Fonda in the 1968 film from Roger Vadim based on Jean-Claude Forest’s French comic book character. Refn will direct and executive produce the series alongside De Laurentiis and co-executive producers Julien Forest and Jean-Marc Lofficier.

Refn called Barbarella “one of the ultimate counter-cultural characters” and said “I look forward to bringing this unique character to life for a new generation of fans.”

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De Laurentiis said Refn has “the perfect vision to elevate such an iconic character like Barbarella and bring her to new audiences worldwide.”

Gaumont’s Vice CEO Christophe Riandee added: “Nicolas is one of today’s hottest directors and it was an obvious choice that we get him on board with this project.”

GIT is the LA-based production and distribution arm of Gallic studio Gaumont who are also producing two of Refn’s upcoming big screen projects including Only God Forgives starring Ryan Gosling.

“We (GIT) are always looking for ways to work with our film side,” GIT CEO Katie O’Connell told The Hollywood Reporter of the film-to-TV synergy. "We were excited to bring Barbarella to Refn as part of that."

She added: “That to me is the perfect way to move through the market place.”

GIT is currently working on several major international projects including Bryan Fuller’s series Hannibal starring Hugh Dancy and Mads Mikkelsen for NBC and the Eli Roth series Hemlock Grove starring Famke Janssen and Bill Skarsgard for Netflix.