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British comedy writer Ben Elton has secured a female lead for his feature helming debut “Maybe Baby.”

Joely Richardson joins Hugh Laurie (“Peter’s Friends”) in the romantic comedy also scripted by Elton, about a professional couple who have everything, except a baby. Phil McIntyre produces and lensing will take place in London.

Elton has a slew of writing credits to his name that include novels, stage plays and TV shows, such as the BBC series, “The Young Ones.”

Following her duties on “Baby,” Richardson, who appeared in 1998’s “Wrestling With Alligators” will begin work on Roland Emmerich’s “The Patriot” opposite Mel Gibson.

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Actor-director Tony Goldwyn and thesp David Paymer have signed on to Miramax’s “Bounce.” Goldwyn will play a stranded traveler who swaps plane tickets with another passenger (Ben Affleck) in order to get home to his wife (Gwyneth Paltrow), unknowingly booking himself on a doomed flight.

Goldwyn, who has recently directed Miramax’s “A Walk on the Moon,” was also the voice of the title character in Disney’s “Tarzan,” and will next appear in PBS’s “Song of the Lark” opposite Allison Elliot.

Paymer has joined Castle Rock’s “Bait,” and David Mamet’s “State and Main” with Sarah Jessica Parker, Alec Baldwin and William H. Macy. Recent credits include Disney’s “Mighty Joe Young” and Par’s “Payback.” He is repped by Susan Smith & Associates.

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Emmy- and Tony-award winner Hal Holbrook has joined the cast of Fox 2000’s “Navy Diver” starring Robert De Niro and Cuba Gooding Jr.

George Tillman Jr. directs the pic about the first African American Navy diver. Holbrook will play a commanding officer of the Navy Dive school.

Holbrook, who has had a long career on the stage and both the small and large screens, has appeared in 1998’s “Hush” and 1993’s “The Firm.” He is repped by Joe Rice at Abrams Artists Agency.

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Alison Lohman will join Albert Finney and Bridget Fonda in “Delivering Milo” for director Nick Castle (“Dennis the Menace”) and exec producer Wim Wenders.

Lohman, who appeared in Columbia’s “Thirteenth Floor” also has a recurring role on Spelling’s “Safe Harbor” for the WB. She is repped by Michael Greenwald and Neil Bagg at Don Buchwald & Associates.

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William R. Moses has joined the cast of the indie pic “75 Degrees in July” for director-writer-producer Hyatt Bass. He joins Karen Sillas and Shirley Knight in the pic currently lensing in Texas.

Best known for his TV roles on the long-running series “Falcon Crest” and “Melrose Place,” Moses has also appeared in the features’ “Mystic Pizza” and “Trial by Jury.” He is repped by Cynthia Land of Don Buchwald & Associates.

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Susanna Thompson has landed a series regular role in Ed Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz’s new series “Once and Again” for Touchstone.

Thompson has guest starred on a number of series, including the “X Files,” “Chicago Hope,” and “NYPD Blue.” Her feature work includes Rob Reiner’s “Ghosts of Mississippi” and she will next appear opposite Harrison Ford in Sydney Pollack’s “Random Hearts.” She is repped by Craig Dorfman and Associates.