Thornton, Par near ‘Plan’ deal

Billy Bob Thornton, who just won the special achievement in filmmaking from the National Board of Review for his film “Sling Blade,” has landed one of the highly coveted leads in Paramount Pictures’ “A Simple Plan,” sources said.

Thornton is in final negotiations for the role of Jacob, the disturbed brother. Bill Paxton has been meeting with director John Boorman for the project as well (Daily Variety, Jan. 7). The project has gone through many incarnations over the past two years and several actors have expressed interest in the role, including Nicolas Cage. The dark thriller, based on the first novel by Scott B. Smith, is about two brothers who discover a huge sum of what is believed to be dirty money and are devoured by greed.

William Morris Agency’s Geyer Kosinski and Todd Harris are negotiating the


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