Duo falling on ‘Duff’

Crowe, Howard team up for 'Power' play

Russell Crowe and Ron Howard are circling “The Power of Duff,” a Stephen Belber-scripted drama that Universal purchased in a spec sale this month. DreamWorks will be a co-production partner.

Imagine chairman Brian Grazer will produce with Marc Platt, who originally brought in the project.

Negotiations are just getting under way for Crowe to play a TV news anchor whose grief over his father’s death prompts him to pray aloud during newscasts. When his prayers begin getting answered, the newsman becomes a most controversial TV figure.

U paid $900,000 against $1.25 million for the script by Belber, who penned the Broadway play “Match” and co-wrote HBO miniseries “The Laramie Project.” Platt, whose recent productions include “Legally Blonde” and the Broadway hit musical “Wicked,” had been planning to produce with his company prexy, Abby Wolf-Weiss.

Project would be the third teaming for Crowe, Howard and Grazer. They made the Oscar winner “A Beautiful Mind” and have a June 3 opening date for “Cinderella Man,” the drama about Depression-era folk hero boxer Jim Braddock.

Timing for “The Power of Duff” isn’t clear. While Crowe is available because his film “Eucalyptus” was shelved, Howard and Grazer are booked through the rest of the year with “The Da Vinci Code,” which will be released May 19, 2006, by Sony.

Howard won’t be available for his next film until 2006. He and Grazer are also developing historical drama “The Serpent and the Eagle,” which Paramount just picked up in turnaround from U. Howard also hopes to direct for Universal a Paul Attanasio-scripted adaptation of the John Steinbeck novel “East of Eden.”

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety

Loading