Spike Lee will shoot a film in Tuscany based on James McBride's 2003 book Miracle at St. Anna, the story of an Italian orphan who befriends a black American soldier in Italy during World War II.

The project - which is in scripting stage - is the first film produced by art house distributor Mikado founders Luigi Musini and Roberto Cicutto.

Their distributorship was taken over by Italian publisher De Agostini in January of this year and, the duo formed On My Own Productions with an eye to produce films with an international edge.

Luigi Musini spoke to Screendaily.com about the project, 'this is a story Spike Lee has wanted to do for some time and the idea came from him. He is very attached to the project which is very beautiful and very cinematographic.'

Musini also said that 'while On My Own wants to make internationally relevant stories, we are particularly satisfied that the film will be shot in Italy.'

The story is based on real facts about a battalion of African American soldiers that were sent to fight in Tuscany in WWII.

Musini added that they 'very recently' acquired rights to the book from the US publisher Penguin.

According to Musini, Lee will present his project to the press in Italy at the beginning of July - at the same time he will do some initial scouting in the Tuscany region where most of the film will be shot. Musini said the budget, shoot dates and casting have not yet been determined at this early stage but he defines the project as 'an important film with important actors.'