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Ritchie’s itching to switch pix

Film envisioned as being in the vein of 'Butch Cassidy'

Looking to reload after the misfire “Swept Away,” director Guy Ritchie has abruptly holstered his planned pic “Revolver” and has instead armed himself with “Six Shooters,” a Civil War-era heist pic at Columbia.

Ritchie’s been offered the film and negotiations are on for a March start.

While an American historical drama may seem a stretch for the British-born director, the heist genre plays to his strength. Ensembler is envisioned as being in the vein of “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.” It’s also got the rough character interaction evident in Ritchie-directed pics “Snatch” and “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.”

Scripted by John Enbom, “Six Shooters” takes place in the last days of the Civil War. Confederate President Jefferson Davis loaded the entire gold reserves aboard trains during the siege of Richmond. Two Union officers along with two infantrymen, one a former slave and the other a brothel owner, plot to steal the loot.

Studio and Col-based producer Laurence Mark purchased the project as a spec by Enbom last fall. Mark is producing with Dan Etheridge, Jason Bloom and Jonathan King.

Ritchie will temporarily halt “Revolver,” a contemporary Vegas swindle pic he co-wrote. CAA and Brillstein-Grey are negotiating the deal. Col’s Peter Schlessel, Matt Tolmach and Rachel O’Connor are shepherding it for the studio.

Mark’s producing “I, Robot” with Will Smith starring and is readying “The Look-Out” at DreamWorks. David Fincher is directing Scott Frank’s script in January.