Baz eyes Crowe, Kidman for epic pic
Russell Crowe and Nicole Kidman, stymied earlier this year in an attempt to make all-Australian pic “Eucalyptus,” are poised to try again with a period epic that Baz Luhrmann will direct later this year.Formal offers haven’t been made, but both thesps are being wooed heavily by the filmmaker, who is collaborating with “Collateral” scribe and fellow Aussie Stuart Beattie on a romance being called an Oz “Gone With the Wind” and expected to be made through Fox. Crowe and Kidman were Down Under and days away from making Fox Searchlight’s “Eucalyptus” with director Jocelyn Moorhouse when the plug was pulled over Crowe’s dissatisfaction with a script rewrite. Kidman quickly aligned to star with Robert Downey Jr. in the River Road-financed, Steven Shainberg-directed Diane Arbus biopic “Fur.” Crowe, busy promoting the Ron Howard-directed “Cinderella Man,” has been looking for a big film to topline this fall. Timing this time favors Luhrmann, who turned to the Aussie epic only after his Alexander the Great project was beaten to the starting line by Oliver Stone’s. Luhrmann and Kidman had a memorable collaboration in “Moulin Rouge,” but this pic would be the first together for the director and Crowe.