Thesp gears up for 'James,' 'Babel'

Brad Pitt certainly won’t be taking extended paternity leave.

Thesp is set to star in two films opening within three weeks of each other this fall — Warner Bros. Pictures’ “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford,” set to unspool Sept. 15, and Paramount Vantage’s “Babel,” slated to unspool Oct. 6.

Warner Bros. is seriously contemplating a delay for the release of “Jesse James” to sometime in 2007, possibly in time for the Berlin Film Festival.

“Babel” isn’t the only reason, or even necessarily the first.

Pitt begins shooting “Ocean’s Thirteen” this summer, meaning he’d have to leave the set in order to promote “Jesse James,” written and directed by Andrew Dominik. Pic is now in post.

Further complicating matters: Warners may have to rush things to have “Jesse James” fully ready by Sept. 15.

Better to be safe than sorry, as they say.

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