NEW YORK — Keanu Reeves is in final talks to star in a remake of the 1968 film “Sweet November” for Steve Reuther’s Bel Air and Warner Bros.
Penned by Kurt Volker, pic will be directed by Pat O’Connor (“Circle of Friends”), with production to begin Feb. 28. It will be the next film for Reeves, who’s expected to be paid his going rate of $15 million against 15% of gross.
Reeves has been sweet on “Sweet November” since the summer, and has agreed to make it one of two films he will topline before starting a 250-day shoot with Larry and Andy Wachowski on two sequels to “The Matrix” in the winter of 2001.
Reeves hasn’t yet solidified the project he’ll do following “Sweet November,” but one candidate is “Fishing for Moonlight,” the true story of a stockbroker who risks life and career to liberate a Russian woman enslaved in prostitution, falling in love with her in the process. That project was just set up at Village Roadshow Pictures by producers Dylan Sellers and Erwin Stoff. It is now being scripted by Jack Olson, who just wrote “33 Liberty Street” for WB.
The original “Sweet November” film starred Anthony Newley as a Gotham-based tycoon who falls for a girl who insists on taking a new lover each month because she is dying.
Project will be produced by Deborah Aal Stoff and Erwin Stoff. The former, a TV producer for 20 years and exec for such companies as Carsey-Werner, Grant Tinker and Act III, had retired to teach screenwriting at USC. But the one goal that had eluded her was remaking “Sweet November,” a film she loved. When Reeves sparked to it, she came out of retirement to develop the script. That led them to O’Connor, the Irish-born director who now lives in London with wife Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio. Best known for “Circle of Friends,” O’Connor has also directed “Dancing at Lughnasa” and “Inventing the Abbotts.”
For Reeves, the film will be his first love story since “A Walk in the Clouds,” which grossed $100 million worldwide. Reeves has been mixing different genres between action films, next starring with Gene Hackman in the WB comedy “The Replacements,” which has an August 2000 release date. Reeves is repped by CAA and 3 Arts; O’Connor and Volker by UTA.