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Is Your Kid Ready to Be a Spielberg Star?

This weekend, an open casting call in Northbrook is seeking the star of a new Steven Spielberg film.

Will your child be the next Elliott?   Screenshot: Universal Pictures

Attention Northbrook residents with sons between the ages of 6 and 9: This weekend there’s an open casting call for the lead role in an upcoming Steven Spielberg film called The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara.

Based on David Kertzer’s 1997 book, the movie recounts the real-life story of the six-year-old son of a Jewish merchant in Bologna, Italy, who in 1858 was forcibly taken by the Catholic Church after being secretly baptized as an infant. The film, which is also set to star Oscar-winning actor Mark Rylance as Pope Pius IX, is slated to begin filming this April.

The search for the titular character is reportedly worldwide, with casting calls held in New York, Los Angeles, London, and Toronto, to name a few. According to the casting call description, the role is for “a truly special boy up for a challenge. The story deals with the complexity of an extremely intelligent and gifted child’s desire to both return to his family and explore an exciting new world.”

If you have a child, nephew, godson, or otherwise aspiring actor who matches this description, take them to the Bernard Weinger Jewish Community Center this Sunday between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. And if an in-person audition is impossible, acting hopefuls can submit a tape (see here for more information).

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