Actress Kristen Stewart attends The National Board of Review Gala, held to honor the 2015 award winners, in the Manhattan borough of New York, on Jan 5, 2016. (Photo: Reuters/Andrew Kelly/Files)

LOS ANGELES - Reuters
Kristen Stewart to star in new, female-directed Charlie's Angels

Charlie's Angels are returning to the big screen next year for a third outing, this time with a female director who is none other than Hunger Games' Elizabeth Banks.

Twilight star Kristen Stewart, along with rising British actresses Naomi Scott and Ella Balinska, will play the lead roles in the latest movie reboot of the 1970s crime caper, Sony Pictures said on Thursday (Jul 26).

"Charlie’s Angels, for me, is one of the original brands to celebrate the empowered woman since its debut in the 1970s. This film honours the legacy of Charles Townsend and his agency, while introducing a new era of modern and global Angels," Banks said in a statement.

Banks, who also directed Pitch Perfect 2, is also a co-producer and co-writer and she will play the role of the avuncular Bosley, which was played by a man on both the original television series and in two movie versions.

The new Charlie's Angels marks a trend in Hollywood to entrust more women with directing big budget fare, and towards ethnic diversity. Scott is of Indian descent, while Balinska is mixed race.

Charlie's Angels first appeared on US television in 1976, starring Farrah Fawcett, Kate Jackson, and Jaclyn Smith as sexy private detectives sent on missions by their unseen boss, Charlie Townsend.

The series spawned a 2000 movie adaptation starring Lucy Liu, Cameron Diaz and Drew Barrymore, who returned for a 2003 sequel Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle.

The new movie is expected to be released in September 2019 but the title and plot details were not announced.

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