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COLUMBUS MEETS ‘MOM’

LAS VEGAS — Julia Roberts and Susan Sarandon have found their man. Chris Columbus, who last directed the comedy “Nine Months,” is expected to step behind the camera for TriStar Pictures’ drama “Stepmom.”

The project, which originally was written by Elizabeth Chandler and Gigi Levangie, is the story of a divorcee (Sarandon) who finds out she has terminal cancer and bonds with her ex-husband’s new girlfriend (Roberts.)

Columbus was in the midst of hammering out a deal Tuesday.

The project, which is expected to go this fall, is being produced by Wendy Finerman (“Forrest Gump”) and Margaret French-Isaac.

Roberts, who revived a lethargic ShoWest crowd with her wit Tuesday afternoon during the Sony presentation, next stars in “My Best Friend’s Wedding” and follows that with Warner Bros.’ “Conspiracy Theory,” which she just completed shooting with co-star Mel Gibson.

Sarandon currently is shooting “The Magic Hour” with Paul Newman for Paramount Pictures. CAA’s Jack Rapke reps Columbus.

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