Actor to star opposite Julia Roberts

HOLLYWOOD — Richard Jenkins has signed to star opposite Julia Roberts in “Eat, Pray, Love” for Columbia Pictures.

Film, which will be helmed by Ryan Murphy, had been set up at Paramount Pictures but was put in turnaround earlier this year.

Based on the international bestseller by Elizabeth Gilbert, story centers on a married woman who embarks on a journey of self-discovery after trying to get pregnant and realizing that she’s not living the life she wants. Murphy and Jennifer Salt adapted the screenplay.

Jenkins will play a Texan whom Roberts’ character befriends at an Indian ashram.

Brad Pitt and Dede Gardner are producing through their Plan B shingle.

Lensing begins in July and will take place in New York, Rome, India and Bali.

Jenkins has two films in the can: Screen Gems’ “Dear John” and the indie “Waiting for Forever.”

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