Keisha Castle-Hughes is set to play the lead role in NATIVITY, a new film which will explore the life of THE VIRGIN MARY before the birth of Jesus Christ. The film will follow Mary and JOSEPH on their travels from Nazareth to Bethlehem and includes other well-known biblical figures including KING HEROD and John The Baptist. New Zealander Castle-Hughes was nominated for a Best Actress Academy Award in 2002, for her role in Whale Rider, aged just 11 - making her the youngest nominee in the category's history. Shooting for Nativity will begin on 1 May (06) in Morocco.