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Ross navigating ‘Aviator’

Pepper's sked conflict allows 'Disco' actor to join prod'n

Matt Ross is in talks to jump aboard Martin Scorsese’s Howard Hughes biopic, “The Aviator,” playing the eccentric billionaire’s chief engineer, Glenn Odekirk.

Ross is replacing Barry Pepper, who had a scheduling conflict involving the Cinerenta production of “White on White,” based on Patricia Highsmith’s “Ripley Under Ground.” Pepper is toplining that pic, scheduled to start production June 29; “Aviator” starts shooting next month in Montreal.

Ross, repped by Framework Entertainment, has appeared in pics including “The Visitors,” “Pushing Tin,” “American Psycho” and “The Last Days of Disco.” He also recently appeared on HBO’s “Six Feet Under.”

“Aviator” will be produced by IEG, with Miramax consulting on production; distrib rights are in the hands of Miramax and Warner Bros.

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