Oscar-winner Helen Mirren has been cast as Golda Meir, Israel’s first female Prime Minister, in the Guy Nattiv-directed biopic Golda. The story, written by Nicholas Martin (Florence Foster Jenkins), focuses on Meir’s leadership role during the Yom Kippur War, the fourth Arab-Israeli War.
The Yom Kippur War, named after the holiest day in the Jewish calendar, began October 6th, 1973 when Egypt, Syria and Jordan launched a surprise attack against Israel to reclaim territory. The attack took place on the Sinai Peninsula and Golan Heights, two sites the Arab nations lost to Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War. The Yom Kippur War would go on until a cease-fire was issued by the UN on October 24th, 1973.
Meir, the fourth female PM in the Middle East who earned the nickname “Iron Lady of Israel,” held her own against her all-male cabinet during her political run. She played a significant role in bringing the attack on Israel to an end and made high-stakes decisions such as reaching out to the U.S for assistance. Meir stepped down from her governmental role in ‘74, but remained an important political figure nonetheless. She passed away in 1978 after a 12-year battle with leukemia which she had kept a secret.
Oscar-winning, Israeli director Guy Nattiv holds a special connection to the story of Golda and the Yom Kippur War, he says, “As someone who was born during the Yom Kippur War, I am honored to tell this fascinating story about the first and only woman to ever lead Israel.”
Nattiv won the Oscar in 2018 for the short film Skin that he directed and co-wrote with Sharon Maymon. That same year, A24 developed an English-language version of the film written and directed by Nattiv. The film of the same title starred Jamie Bell, Vera Farmiga and Danielle Macdonald.
Golda will be produced by Michael Kuhn (Florence Foster Jenkins, The Duchess) and screenwriter Nicholas Martin. Embankment Films, which recently backed Oscar-nominated film The Father, will handle the film’s international sales while CAA Media Finance and ICM will handle the domestic rights.
Production is scheduled to begin as soon as October 2021.