An austerity-minded 20th Century Fox may be throwing out Steven Seagal with the bathwater. According to his attorney Buddy Monasch, Fox has passed on Seagal’s putative directorial debut “Man of Honor.”

The “Godfather”-style drama had a troubled development history at Fox.

Several weeks ago, after former studio topper Joe Roth balked at the film’s $ 30 million budget, Morgan Creek Prods. was slated to come in for a third of the costs in return for overseas rights. When Morgan Creek pulled out last week, Fox 86ed the pic.

Bone of contention is that Seagal reportedly had to pay personnel attached to the project out of his own pocket, to the tune of $ 1 million-plus.

“Man of Honor” may now be in limbo as Seagal turns to Warner’s ecological action film “Rainbow Warrior,” also with an eye toward directing. But late last week, according to industry sources, Warner was discussing greenlighting the project in a co-financing arrangement with Largo Entertainment.

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