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Stahl warms to NL’s ‘Cool’

Production to begin in spring for 2006 release

Nick Stahl will star in “A Cool Breeze on the Underground,” New Line Cinema’s adaptation of the Don Winslow novel.

Co-directors Eric Bress and J. Mackye Gruber (“The Butterfly Effect”) adapted the screenplay, a mystery in which college student and private investigator Neal Carey is sent to England to locate a senator’s missing daughter. Production is expected to begin this spring for a 2006 release.

Don Murphy is producing the pic, which began its development at Columbia Pictures in 1997. The project later went to DreamWorks before landing at New Line.

The project’s overseen by production prexy Toby Emmerich and exec VP Mark Ordesky. Rick Benattar is co-producer, with Clare Polstein as executive producer.

“Cool Breeze” could prove to be the start of a new franchise for New Line. The Carey character appeared in four subsequent Winslow novels, most recently “While Drowning in the Desert” in 1996.

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Stahl will be seen next in Robert Rodriguez’s “Sin City,” a Dimension film skedded for an April 1 release, and continues to star in HBO’s “Carnivale.”