Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Julianne Moore Joins John Requa & Glenn Ficarra's Series Based on Documentary THE LOST LEONARDO

Julianne Moore Picture

Julianne Moore" is set to reunite with "Crazy Stupid Love" filmmakers John Requa and Glenn Ficarra on an upcoming Studiocanal series based on the acclaimed 2021 documentary "The Lost Leonardo", which chronicled the restoration of a crumbling painting depicting Christ in the Renaissance called "Salvador Mundi" that was found to possibly be the final work of Leonardo Da Vinci around the time the master painter did the Mona Lisa.

Moore stars as Dianne Modestini, an art restorer who saw something special in the painting and painstakingly restored it. She and everyone else were surprised to watch it go from a $1,000 estate sale item to the priciest painting ever bought, fetching $450 million by the time the auctioneer banged the gavel at the New York auction house Christie's in 2017.

In between the restoration and sale, there were numerous mysterious twists, turns and controversies from the underbelly of the fine art world. But it all started with the original buyers who engaged Modestini, the wife of a dying legendary art restorer who took on a project that looked like a wreck when she got it. Skeptics said most of the paint visible in the finished product was hers and only a portion by Da Vinci. But Modestini found things under the top layer of paint that gave it gravitas as a masterpiece, like the position of the thumb that was similar to what Da Vinci painted in other works.

The characters are eccentric and fun, including an intermediary who bought the painting to transfer to a Russian oligarch. The latter was enraged to discover he wasn't told by his broker that he'd tacked on an enormous markup, which led the oligarch to dedicate himself to ruining the intermediary. The eventual auction buyer never stepped forward, but is widely believed to be Mohammed bin Salman, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia. The series endeavors to discover whether the Lost Leonardo is the greatest art discovery of our time or one of the great scams in art history.

Moore will also executive produce. Reque & Ficarra will direct and also executive produce under their Zaftig Films banner along with partner Charlie Gogolak. Gillian Weeks created the series, wrote the pilot episode and will serve as showrunner and executive producer. The Picture Company's Alex Heineman & Andrew Rona will executive produce through their overall deal at Studiocanal, along with Geoff Shaevitz and Marc Mounier of Entertainment 360's.


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