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Meryl Streep will star as opera singer Maria Callas

Streep, who has won three Oscars in her acclaimed movie career, will take on the role of the legendary operatic diva, who died in 1977.

The new television version of Terence McNally’s play, Master Class , will be directed by Mike Nichols for the HBO network. Filming will begin in January 2015, according to the New York Times.

The plot of the original play sees Callas reflecting on her life and career as she holds a singing masterclass at New York’s Juillard School of music.

At the moment it has not been revealed whether or not Streep will do any singing for the role. She previously provided her own vocals for the movie adaptation of the stage musical, Mamma Mia! .

Streep’s previous roles based on real people include Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady and Karen Blixen in Out Of Africa .

Master Class is the second major project about Maria Callas currently in production, with a movie biopic also announced at this year’s Cannes Film Festival to be directed and written by Niki Caro.