March 19, 2003 01:00 PM

In a move that shows she’s not just Queen for a day, Oscar nominee and current box-office champ Queen Latifah is about to play something of a princess in the upcoming Disney film “Just Wright.”

Latifah, nominated for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Mama Morton in “Chicago,” currently stars in the No. 1 film, “Bringing Down the House.”

“Just Wright,” a contemporary version of the Cinderella story, was conceived with Latifah in mind by screenwriter Michael Elliot, Variety reports. However, the film won’t be just any fairy tale. Set in the world of basketball, Latifah will play a physical therapist who helps a pro ballplayer recover from an injury as he falls for her.

Elliot’s previous credits include “Brown Sugar” and “Like Mike.” Casting the full-figured Queen Latifah as the love interest in a romantic comedy isn’t usually done, he tells Variety, but the idea occurred to him while watching her make an entrance on the red carpet at the Golden Globes.

“They don’t usually give actresses like Latifah those films, but as I looked around the room, most of the women there didn’t look like Halle Berry,” he says. Besides, he adds, the success of a film such as “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” starring Nia Vardalos, proves there is a market for realistically proportioned women in love.

“You don’t have to be Julia Roberts, Meg Ryan or Halle to appeal to the real women who identify with women like Nia or Latifah,” says Elliot.

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