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Rush, Neill try ‘Pudding’

MELBOURNE — Oscar-winning Australian actor Geoffrey Rush (“Shine”) and Sam Neill (“The Piano,” “Event Horizon”) are in final negotiations for lead voice roles in “The Magic Pudding,” an animated film from Sydney-based Energee Entertainment, sources told Daily Variety.

After five years of negotiations with the estate of late author Norman Lindsay, Energee won movie and merchandising rights to “Pudding” in March ahead of such international contenders as Disney and Jim Henson Prods. Based on a classic Oz kids novel, which has been in print continuously since 1918, pic is being adapted by Oz kids scribe Morris Gleitzman.

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