Angelina Jolie has chosen Stony Brook University professor Richard Leakey as the subject of her next movie, according sources including deadline.com and The Hollywood Reporter.
Jolie will direct the film from a script by Eric Roth, the screenwriter who won an Oscar for "Forrest Gump."
Leakey is a Kenya-born paleoanthropologist who helped combat Africa's elephant-poaching problem during the 1990s and later became active in African politics. He is a professor of anthropology at Stony Brook University, where he helped establish the Turkana Basin Institute, a not-for-profit research facility based in Kenya.
"I've felt a deep connection to Africa and its culture for much of my life," Jolie said in a statement quoted in the Los Angeles Times. She described her latest movie as the story of "a man drawn into the violent conflict with elephant poachers who emerged with a deeper understanding of man's footprint and a profound sense of responsibility for the world around him."
"Africa" would be Jolie's fourth film as a director, following 2011's "In the Land of Blood and Honey," a romance set during the Bosnian War, and "Unbroken," the story of the Olympic athlete Louis Zamperini, which is due in theaters on Christmas Day. "By the Sea," in which Jolie serves as writer-director and star -- alongside her husband, Brad Pitt -- is slated for a 2015 release.
"Africa" will be produced by Jolie, Jon Peters ("Man of Steel") and Skydance Productions. The cinematographer is Roger Deakins, an eleven-time Oscar nominee known for the Coen brothers' "No Country For Old Men."