Nicole Kidman could star in new film about Sutton Hoo
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Award-winning actress Nicole Kidman and Ipswich-born actor Ralph Fiennes are in talks to star in a new film about Suffolk's Sutton Hoo, it has emerged.
The high-profile pair are rumoured to have considered the collaboration when they met at the Telluride Film Festival earlier this month.
Hollywood star Kidman is said to have read a script by Byzantium writer Moira Buffini, adapted from John Preston’s novel about the Sutton Hoo discovery, aptly named ‘The Dig’.
Fiennes, who played Lord Voldermort in Harry Potter, was born in Ipswich and has close connections to Suffolk. He is also rumoured to be on board.
One of Britain’s greatest archaeological finds – often considered the UK’s Tutankhamun – the Sutton Hoo ship burial was uncovered in 1939.
Revealed in a world exclusive by this newspaper that same year, the earth-shattering discovery sent shockwaves around the archaeological world.
Heavily based on the find, The Dig is said to look closely at the relationship between Edith Pretty – one of the driving forces behind the excavation project – and Basil Brown, a self-taught Suffolk archaeologist employed by the widow in 1937.
Wealthy landowner Mrs Pretty lived in Tranmer House, which overlooked the burial site.
She had spiritualist learnings, and it was said she became convinced there was treasure in the ancient burial mound because of a vivid dream in which she saw and heard the funeral procession.
On the advice of Guy Maynard at Ipswich Museum, she took on Mr Brown from Rickinghall – and he began to dig with the help of her gardener John Jacobs and gamekeeper William Spooner.
READ MORE: Sutton Hoo – The story behind the treasure
It’s not clear yet when The Dig will be released – and according to its British Film Council listing, it is in pre-production with bosses aiming to start filming next year.