Roberto Benigni, the Oscar-winning actor-director of Life Is Beautiful, has announced that his next project will be a live-action version of Pinocchio. His actress wife, Nicoletta Braschi, who starred opposite him in Life Is Beautiful, is also expected to star in the new film.

Benigni, who said he had wanted to play the character "ever since he was born", has already started working with Life Is Beautiful co-writer Vincenzo Cerami on a screen adaptation of Carlo Collodi's popular 1940's story.

The film will be produced by Life Is Beautiful team Elda Ferri and Gianluigi Braschi for Melampo Cinematografica. No further details were available.