Ballet biopic on choreographer George Balanchine

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Los Angeles,November 24: Gulfstream Pictures is developing a biopic on the early years of the influential ballet choreographer George Balanchine.

David K Israel is adapting from Elizabeth Kendall's book "Balanchine and the Lost Muse: Revolution and the Making of a Choreographer", sources added.

The book, published in 2013, focused on the friendship between Balanchine and his childhood friend Liidia (Lidochka) Ivanova from the years just before the 1917 Russian Revolution to Balanchine's escape from Russia in 1924.

Balanchine had been abandoned by his mother at the St Petersburg Imperial Ballet Academy in 1913 at the age of nine.

Ivanova died days before she and Balanchine had planned to leave Russia together. Zippora Karz, a ballerina chosen by Balanchine for the New York City Ballet, will be an executive producer.

"When I read Elizabeth Kendall's book, I felt compelled to bring this remarkable, untold story to the world," producer Zippora Karz said.

"Balanchine's early life was bursting with love and passion, but also tragedy, and his story is the ultimate triumph of the human spirit over adversity. I am so looking forward to seeing that inspiration, love and desire captured in this movie." 

Israel has written music and libretto for ballets commissioned by Paul Taylor and Twyla Tharp.

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