British actress Joely Richardson is set to portray revered American poet Emily Dickinson in a new one-woman show.

The Nip/Tuck star will tackle the role in an Off Broadway production of William Luce's play The Belle of Amherst, which is based on DICkinson's life story.

Richardson admits she never imagined herself taking on such a big job, saying, "Never say never. I always swore to myself that I would never do a one-woman show. I thought, 'That's for crazy people'. And then I read it (the script for The Belle of Amherst)."

Steve Cosson will direct the stage show, which is scheduled to open on 19 October (14) at New York's Westside Theatre.

Richardson will be hoping to follow in the footsteps of actress Julie Harris, who won a Tony Award for her portrayal of DICkinson in a Broadway production of the play in 1977.

The Brit last appeared on the New York stage in 2012 in productions of Ivanov, opposite Ethan Hawke, and Side Effects.