Jodie Comer recently dropped out of Ridley Scott’s Napoleon Bonaparte biopic Kitbag, but he already found a worthy replacement. The Crown star Vanessa Kirby is now set to play the French emperor’s wife Josephine opposite Joaquin Phoenix.
Kitbag was set to start production later this month before Comer announced she’s exiting the project due to COVID-related scheduling issues. Scott entered “advanced negotiations” to find an actress who would take her part, and eventually settled with Vanessa Kirby.
According to its official synopsis, Kitbag “explores Bonaparte’s origins and his swift, ruthless climb to emperor, through the lens of his addictive and often volatile relationship with the Empress.” David Scarpa, who previously collaborated with Scott on All the Money in the World, wrote the script.
Vanessa Kirby rose to prominence with the Emmy-nominated portrayal of Princess Margaret on the first two seasons of the royal drama The Crown. She reunited with Netflix on Pieces of a Woman in 2020 and scored her first Oscar nomination for the lead role in this film.
Kitbag is not the only high-profile project she’s currently attached to. She’s expected to return as White Widow in the next two Mission: Impossible movies, appear in dramas The Brutalist and The Son, and star opposite Jake Gyllenhaal in the survival thriller Suddenly.