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Douglas, Russo sought for Warners’ comedy

King inked to pen script

NEW YORK — Warner Bros. has made a $600,000 against near-seven-figure deal for the romantic comedy pitch “As Told To” as a starring vehicle for Michael Douglas and Rene Russo.

The project, to be produced by Douglas’ Furthur Films, was pitched by Andrea King, who will write the script. She previously set at Universal the spec script “Still Life,” a vehicle for Douglas and Meryl Streep that Mimi Leder is in talks to direct, also with Furthur producing.

In the WB project, Douglas is aboard to play an NBA basketball coach whose team has come unglued after two title-winning seasons. Ego and greed have created rampant dissension, endangering a megabucks deal the coach made for a motivational book. In desperation, he’s paired with a ghostwriter, a beautiful but frustrated novelist, and their antagonistic relationship grows into a loving one.

Douglas and Furthur’s Allison Segan will produce, with Tom Teicholz exec producing. WB’s Courtenay Valenti will shepherd the project.

It is the first pairing for Douglas, whose “Wonder Boys” is upcoming, and Russo, who’s coming off an acclaimed turn in “The Thomas Crown Affair.”

King, a former scribe for the Hollywood Reporter, has made numerous screenwriting deals recently. They include “Still Life,” in which Douglas and Streep are to play a battling couple whose love is renewed when they begin raising their grandchildren after their daughter’s death.

King also did the rewrite of the Mike Ellis and Pamela Falk script “The Wedding Planner,” to which Jennifer Lopez and Brendan Fraser are attached at Destination; she also rewrote the Julie Talen script “Boys R Us” at Fox, about spurned wives on Shelter Island who start a brothel. She’s working on two TV pilots as well.

King is repped by CAA and attorney Michael Gendler.