Los Angeles: Filmmaker Steven Spielberg will start his long-in-the-works religious drama 'The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara', after he wraps 'Ready Player One'.

Steven Spielberg
Steven Spielberg

Mark Rylance, who won the best supporting Oscar for Steven Spielberg's 'Bridge Of Spies', will star as Pope Pius IX in the Amblin Entertainment project, reported Entertainment Weekly.

Tony Kushner, who worked on Spielberg's 'Lincoln' and 'Munich', wrote the script adapting the David Kertzer novel, which has been in development with the filmmaker since 2008.

The true story revolves around a six-year-old Jewish boy in Bologna, Italy, in 1858 who was seized by the police and removed from his parents' home. He was subsequently raised as a Catholic and became a priest in the Augustinian order.

Steven Spielberg, Marc Platt and Kristie Macosko Krieger, who produced 'Bridge of Spies', will back the project.