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Barbra Streisand to direct Catherine the Great biopic

BARBRA Streisand is to direct her first film in 19 years, a biopic called 'Catherine the Great'.

The 73-year-old actor-and-director will be tasked with telling the tale of the 18th century Russian empress who is stuck in an unhappy marriage after coming to power through having her husband Tsar Peter III killed by captors.

Streisand will work alongside 'Dude? Where's My Car?' producer Gil Netter and the script has been penned by Kristina Lauren Anderson who wrote the script for a 2014 TV series of the same name, according to Entertainment Weekly.

'Catherine the Great' will be the star's first directing job since 1996 romantic comedy 'The Mirror Has Two Faces'.

While it's Streisand's first job back in the director's chair, she has been involved in the directing of her own concerts and was due to be involved in 'Skinny and Cat' in 2012, which starred Colin Firth and Cate Blanchett, but the project never happened.

Elsewhere, Streisand was recently honoured - alongside multi-award-winning director Steven Spielberg and singer James Taylor among others - with the Medal of Freedom by American President Barack Obama.

At a special ceremony at The White House, Obama told the crowd: "What a great blessing to be in a nation where individuals as diverse, (from) wildly different backgrounds, can help to shape our dreams, how we live together, help define justice and freedom and love. They represent what's best in us and we are very, very proud to welcome them today."

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