Spanish actress Penelope Cruz has signed to star opposite Nicolas Cage in John Madden's Captain Corelli's Mandolin for Working Title Films.

Eric Fellner and Kevin Loader are producing the film which is being backed by Universal Pictures and Canal Plus. Miramax has UK and Australian rights. Production is scheduled to start in May on the Greek island of Cephalonia.

Earlier this week Working Title revealed that it had secured Renee Zellweger to play thirtysomething singleton Bridget Jones in its adaptation of Helen Fielding's best-selling novel Bridget Jones' Diary.

Zellweger, who is working with a dialogue coach to play the role with an English accent, will next be seen with Jim Carrey in Me, Myself & Irene.