Woods and Venora partners in ‘Crimes’

Thesps in final talks to star in Eastwood pic

James Woods and Diane Venora are in final talks to commit “True Crimes” for Clint Eastwood and Warner Bros., sources said Thursday.

Pic, slated to start production in May, is also expected to feature Bernard Hill, last seen going down with the ship in “Titanic.”

Based on Andrew Klavan’s bestselling novel, project is about a down-and-out journalist who interviews a death-row inmate only to discover new evidence. The journo has 26 hours to prove the prisoner’s innocence.

Eastwood is directing, producing and starring in the pic, which will also be produced by Richard Zanuck and Lili Fini Zanuck. Stephen Schiff, the New Yorker mag writer, is scripting.

Woods was last heard as Hades in Disney’s “Hercules.” In 1997, he also appeared in the indie pic “Kicked in the Head” and the Jodie Foster starrer “Contact.” Other recent credits include “Ghosts of Mississippi,” “Nixon” and “Casino.”

ICM repped Woods in the deal.

Venora’s most recent credit is “The Jackal” opposite Bruce Willis and Richard Gere. Other features include “William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet,” “Surviving Picasso” and “The Cotton Club.”

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