Arthur Hiller is expected to be signed to direct Universal Pictures’ “The Babe,” with John Goodman toplining as Babe Ruth. Sources said negotiations with the actor and director were expected to be concluded by the end of last week.

“The Babe,” scripted by John Fusco, is expected to go before the cameras in early May during Goodman’s hiatus from ABC’s “Roseanne” series. It would be the first film out of the box under Goodman’s new three-picture deal with Universal. Bill Finnigan is attached as producer and Fusco is expected to assume a production role as well. Hiller’s romantic comedy “Married To It,” starring Beau Bridges, Stockard Channing, Cybill Shepherd and Ron Silver, is due out through Orion later this year. He recently directed Hollywood Pictures’ “Taking Care Of Business.”

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