Life of Anna Nicole Smith to become opera

February 12, 2009 2:36:01 PM PST
Britain's Royal Opera is planning a 2011 show based on the life of late model, stripper and reality TV star Anna Nicole Smith. [SIGN UP: Get entertainment news sent to you]

Smith, who was born in Houston, died of a drug overdose two years ago in Florida.

The show will have music by British composer Mark-Anthony Turnage. The libretto is by Richard Thomas, co-creator of "Jerry Springer: The Opera," an earlier merger of highbrow and lowbrow culture.

Director of opera Elaine Padmore told The Guardian newspaper the Smith show "is not going to be tawdry; it is going to be witty, clever, thoughtful and sad."

Smith was Playboy's Playmate of the Year in 1993, and the next year married a Houston oilman -- 89-year-old J. Howard Marshall II. After his death she fought a protracted legal battle over his estimated $500 million fortune.

Smith died five months after the Bahamas death of her 20-year-old son, Daniel.

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