Sarah Polley to play Queen of Sweden

Mika Kaurismaki's historical drama 'Queen Kristina'

TORONTO -- Sarah Polley ("Dawn of the Dead") is to play the Queen of Sweden in Finnish director Mika Kaurismaki's historical drama "Queen Kristina," it was announced Thursday.

The Canada-Nordic co-production comes from Toronto-based Triptych Media, Kaurismaki's Marianna Films in Helsinki and Berlin-based Hank Levine Film Eleven.

Canadian screenwriter Michel Marc Bouchard will pen the script for "Queen Kristina," a portrait of the 17th century Swedish queen who ascended to the throne at age six years and became an eccentric political and military leader who eventually abdicated her throne to pursue artistic and scientific interests.

The picture will shoot in Canada and Sweden in early 2011. Union Pictures has picked up the Canadian rights.

Mika Kaurismaki's latest film, "The House of Branching Love," will have its international premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on Friday, after earlier opening on theatrical release in Finland.

Polley's latest film, Jaco van Dormael's "Mr Nobody," will also debut in Toronto this week.