By Alynda Wheat
Updated August 05, 2009 at 10:06 PM EDT

Joe Eszterhas is back with his first film project in three years, a drama about the Virgin of Guadalupe, Mpower Pictures announced today. Eszterhas (Basic Instinct, Flashdance, et. al.) left Hollywood for Ohio in 2001, when he was treated for throat cancer. He’ll pen the as-yet-untitled screenplay about the 16th-century image of the Virgin Mary that appeared on a peasant’s cloak, and has since become a symbol for Mexican independence. It marks Eszterhas’s first movie work since the Hungarian film Children of Glory in 2006, and his first American project since 1997’s An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn. “This is a labor of love for me,” said Eszterhas in a statement released by Mpower. “I have been hoping for some time to write a film that is both entertaining and inspiring.”