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Movies

Leonardo DiCaprio to star in Leonardo da Vinci biopic

Paramount has picked up the rights to Walter Isaacson’s new book on the famed painter

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Gabriel Olsen/FilmMagic; Hulton Archive/Getty Images

One famous Leonardo is going to play another.

Leonardo DiCaprio is set to star as Leonardo da Vinci in a biopic about the famed painter and scientist.

According to Deadline, which first reported the news, Paramount Pictures won the rights to Walter Isaacson’s not-yet-published book on da Vinci over the weekend, beating out Universal in an “intense” bidding war. DiCaprio will also produce the film under his Appian Way banner, alongside Appian’s president of production Jennifer Davisson.

The casting news is fitting — according to family legend, DiCaprio got his name after his mother, Irmalin DiCaprio, felt her unborn son kicking while she was looking at a da Vinci painting at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Italy.

Isaacson is the bestselling author behind Steve Jobs, which came to the big screen in 2015 as a film directed by Danny Boyle and starring Michael Fassbender. More recently, his 2007 book Einstein: His Life and Universe, was adapted for the National Geographic series Genius. His Leonardo da Vinci book will be released in October.