NEW YORK — Billy Crudup, who made his film debut in Barry Levinson’s “Sleepers,” will star with Woody Harrelson in Stephen Frears’ “HiLo Country” for Polygram’s Working Title Films.

“HiLo” is based on a Max Evans book that was adapted by Walon Green, who also scripted Sam Peckinpah’s “The Wild Bunch.” Rudd Simmons is producing the Western about two best friends who become involved with a married woman. Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner are exec producers of the pic, which will begin lensing in New Mexico in September.

After wrapping “HiLo,” Crudup will segue to Keith Gordon’s “Waking the Dead,” which Jodie Foster is producing through her Egg Prods. shingle.

Crudup will next be seen in the Cruise/Wagner production of Robert Towne’s “Pre,” based on the life of long-distance runner Steve Prefontaine. Warner Bros. plans to release the biopic during the 1998 Winter Olympics in February.

Crudup’s film credits include “Inventing the Abbotts” and Woody Allen’s “Everyone Says I Love You.” He made his Broadway debut in Tom Stoppard’s “Arcadia,” for which he won several honors, including the 1995 Outer Critics Circle Award for outstanding debut and the 1995 Theater World Award.

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